School’s sugar-coated hidden curriculum
“Leck mich/ bite me” consists in a series of eatable caramel bars, wrapped in a self-drawn wrapping. They are made of melted Carambars, a traditional French candy, one would find in any school yard. The name Carambar, a contraction of the word “caramel” and bar”. In Germany, where the work was shown, “bar” translates into “Riegel”, which is close enough to the word “rule”: “Regel”. My version of the candy bar is a school 20 cm ruler, which translates school’s idea that learning is quantifiable, and as consequence, measurable.
In the original Carambar wrapping, one will always find a little joke. They usually consist in wordplays and are known to be quite cheap. In my version, sentences from my school years such as “I must not make mistakes” or “I must not daydream too much” are printed inside the wrappers, in the same color and typography as the traditional jokes. The status of these sentences is ambiguous. One the one hand, their displacement from the classroom to the candy wrapper, exacerbate their absurdity, and make them look like jokes. On the other hand, they seem all the more pervasive and luring, embodying the sugar-coated messages of a hidden curriculum.