Robert McKay

I am interested in cultural moments when bees are objects of value and (probably more interesting) when they appear to be valueless. That’s to say, I am interested in the aspects of bees that cannot be recuperated into human projects or as human benefits (such as their pollenating and honey-producing abilities). I am fascinated, rather, by the bees that don’t do what we want and that do what we don’t want — such as the tree bee. How, then, do writers and artists think about the question of tolerating, accommodating or disposing of life-forms that challenge our ways of being in the world by buzzingly inhabiting the parts of our homes that we do not use? How do we respond when such insects making a strange and incommensurable value of their own in the negative spaces of our culture? Perhaps, indeed, this is the quality that some bees share most fully with art itself?

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