Live together

2009, Video, 16 drawings, pencil on paper, 32x32cm (each)

Demodex folliculorum and Demodex brevis, commonly referred to as eyelash mites or face mites, are tiny parasitic mites that live at the base of human hair follicles located mainly in the oily T-zone region of the face, and can be found living on most adults.
Since they survive by eating excess sebum, which in turn regulates the production of natural skin oils, they are considered to be beneficial.
Demodex are also known as “pimple mites” as they sometimes get trapped inside clogged pores that create pimples, then continue to reproduce inside; when the pimple drains, the mites exit with the fluid. They are not, contrary to common belief, the cause of the pimples.
Face mites do not live on newborn babies, but can be passed from adult to child with skin contact. Their presence, then, also functions as proof of a parent’s love for their child.
For the “Live together” series, Yamashita and Kobayashi collected eyelash mites from their own skin and, viewing them through a microscope, made sketches of the mites.
(Exhibition text)


2009 Takuro Someya Contemporary Art, Kashiwa, Japan