Helena is a social worker from Belgium that comes to Iquitos, Peru in the Amazon Jungle to help disabled kids, and sometimes adults, in the barrio find the medical attention and schooling that they need. Armed with a pen and small notebook, she scours the town looking for the kids that have fallen in between the cracks. She meets with them and their parents to find out how they are doing and what they might need. A lot of the parents are unaware of the opportunities that exist for them. Some parents can not read or write and need help filling out the paperwork. She negotiates getting these disabled kids the medicines and surgeries that they need, along with enrolling them into schools and medical clinics. I followed her around for many days photographing most of it so that she could use the pictures to gain funds from donors. Helena also expressed to me that she thought a side effect of me being there photographing her, seemed to be giving her an elevated social status in the eyes of the schoolmasters and hospital staff. They were taking her more seriously, she said, in her attempt to help the kids. These photographs are from my days with her in the streets, homes, orphanages, hospitals and schools of the people she was working with.
Kambo medicine (monkey frog medicine) originating from the Amazonian tribe, the Matses, is not easy. Not only is it very dangerous to obtain, but when you take it, it is painful- but only for about 15 minutes. I am going to share these photos with you of Victor going through the process of the application of the medicine. It cured me of candida in 2 doses. It has anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties along with many different good peptides. When the medicine is first applied, it forces your digestive system to purge by emptying the contents in your stomach; including the bile, where toxins are stored. You first burn yourself on your arm with a stick, put the frog secretion on the burn, and then get on all fours ready for your face to swell up and to projectile vomit your brains out. Bon appetit!
Harvesting Kambo medicine is dangerous. It starts with a trip into the jungle to a lagoon at night. Our trip included trying to avoid alligators, giant biting ants, and termites; but you may also easily run into Viper snakes as our guide, Victor, did the next day. You must listen for the call of the Monkey Frog; which can be provoked by calling to the frog yourself. Then you must find the frog, usually located high in a tree, from listening to where it is calling from. After that, you climb the tree and catch the frog. The frog seems apathetic to capture as they have no real predators. We took our frog home for the night on a branch to harvest the medicine in the morning. The frog is tied up and provoked slightly to release it’s stress secretion and the blunt part of the back of a knife is used to scrape the secretion gently from its skin. When the secretion is on the blunt part of the back of the knife, it is wiped onto a wood pallet to store it for the medicinal application of it later. The frog is then untied, and thanked, and gently released back to the lagoon again.
Food Network Celebrity Chef, Adam Gertler, can put his leg behind his head without even warming up. Obviously this man has talent! He also makes sausages… delicious sausages… delicious MEAT sausages, which despite my 2 week vegetarian kick I could not say ‘no’ too and am glad I didn’t. This thing, I believe it was the Uber Kase, was possibly the best sausage I’ve ever eaten. You can also find them at ‘Pop-Up’s’ around Los Angeles where he and his brother are raising capital to get their restaurant started.
I am proud to announce that the 2nd episode of Planet Davin (a show I created and directed) is finally online!!! Planet Davin is a show hosted by Davin Givhan that features a cat, an artist and a musical guest. His co-host is Bryan Kertenian. Get to know musical guest Kim Talon this week!
Noelle Romano is an actress and voice artist who lives in Los Angeles. She is most well known for her wry humor while bench pressing 30 pounds at the Hollywood YMCA. Here’s the sitcom she’s working on: http://www.indiegogo.com/TWISTed-2
Hearing about an exhibit in Bristol, England called “Art of the New World” I wrote Corey Helford Gallery in Culver City, CA to ask if I could be a part. Although I was too late for the show, the gallery director, Mr. Richard Scarry, said both him and his partner loved my work and was wondering if they could interview me for their blog. I immediately agreed and the following interview took place. It was re-posted in a couple of different places including Juxtapoz and Daily duJour. Pretty cool to be getting recognized by the art world. Thank YOU!