11×14 inches, watercolor and gold leaf
When dairy cows are artificially inseminated, the farmer inserts a gloved hand (in the position shown, from what I can tell looking at dairy industry tutorials) into the cow’s rectum to help guide the inseminating rod which is then inserted into her vagina. Typically she is restrained in a cage which the industry calls a “rape rack”- speaking volumes about how industry farmers themselves view the act they are committing.
This act of sexual violation against these cows- females, women close to my own heart- is repeated over and over during their lives. Their babies are then taken, leaving them bereft and lactating. We literally hook them up to machines to suck out the food intended for their young. The entirety of the life experience of dairy cows is a story of such total violation that it physically pains me and leaves me sick to my stomach. The people who own and work with these cows take absolutely everything from them. They take their freedom, their dignity, their bodily autonomy, their babies, and after four to five years (out of a natural lifespan of twenty to twenty-five) they take their lives. I envision this greedy, evil, insatiable hand reaching right through this beautiful cow and ripping out her heart.