Artist: Veit Laurent Kurz
Exhibition title: FROG DOPE – The Complete Story
Venue: Off Vendome, Düsseldorf, Germany
Date: January 22 – February 27, 2016
Photography: images copyright and courtesy the artist and Off Vendome, Düsseldorf
Coprophagia refers to the many forms of feces eating, including the eating of one’s own, of other individuals, and the feces of other species, once it is deposited, or taken directly from the anus.
Eating feces is normal behavior for some species, while others that might not normally consume feces do so under very unusual conditions. Young elephants and hippopotamuses eat the feces of their mothers or others in their herd to obtain the bacteria required to properly digest vegetation found in their ecosystems. Others, like hamsters or guinea pigs, eat their own droppings, which are thought to be a source of vitamins B and K, as well as nutritive elements produced by bacteria in the gut.
In humans, coprophagia has often been observed in individuals with mental illness. Beyond that there exist historical records that Bedouins recommend the consumption of fresh, warm camel feces as a remedy for bacterial dysentery; its efficacy was anecdotally confirmed by German soldiers in Africa during World War II. There are examples in medicine from centuries ago, where physicians tasted their patient’s feces to better judge their disposition, and even today the treatment of stomach and digestion problems through feces therapy can be found.
Frog Dope is slang for the feces of the Dilldapp, a goblin-like creature that can still be found in the Upper Frankland and Hunsrück areas of Germany. A mix of human features with attributes of hamster and shark, these creatures often appear to be of an ambivalent nature; while they often perform domestic chores, they play malicious tricks if insulted or neglected.
Being vegetarians, the Dilldapps’ digestive process refines the vitamins A, B and D, as well as amino acids from what they consume, and as a result of this purification, their feces appears green. It’s unknown exactly how, but this reaction also embeds a psychedelic of the Tryptamine family into what the Dilldapp have eaten, which can be found in certain plants as well as in the secretion of the dermal gland of the marine toad. It has a structural makeup of Serotonin and Melatonin, and a functional compound of other psychedelic Tryptamines, such as Psilocybin.
If inhaled as an entheogen, the effects of the Dilldapp’s feces are firstly a relaxant, creating clarity, calmness, and alertness in users, symptoms that are often followed by confusion, insomnia or mild euphoria. In the final stage however, near death experiences as well as a spiritual revelations regarding life’s purpose have been reported.
The experience of inhaling Frog Dope quickly made it known in extropian circles as a smart drug that prepares us to escape earth’s clutches, the body and death itself. In a time marked by constant consumption and defecation; of goods, of thoughts, of nonsense, we constantly digest the shit of others. It may be the case that the principles of life and of the future are to be found in shit.