Back in early 2021, plant-based meat manufacturer LikeMeat celebrated the annual Veganuary promotion by releasing a video in which Rammstein frontman Till Lindemann slowly munched his way through one of their burgers.
"Veganuary promotes a vegan lifestyle and encourages people to eat purely plant-based food in January," the company wrote. "The art film shows Till Lindemann eating a plant burger from LikeMeat."
Given free rein to bring his own ideas to the shoot, Lindemann based his performance on Andy Warhol Eats A Hamburger, a four-minute film from Danish documentarian Jørgen Leth in which the acclaimed pop artist ate a Burger King burger on camera.
Warhol's performance was captured by Leth for his 1982 film 66 Scenes From America, an experimental collage comprised of short vignettes of American life.
"The action takes a very long time to perform," Leth revealed in the 2001 book Danish Directors: Dialogues on a Contemporary National Cinema. "It’s simply agonising. I have to admit that I personally adore that, because it’s a pure homage to Warhol. It couldn’t be more Warholesque. That’s of course why he agreed to do it."
When Lindemann came to perform his version, he mimicked Warhol perfectly. The same hair, the same suit, the same protruding shirt lapels. And the set-up was the same: the same table, the same grey wall, and the same, step-by-step consumption of the meal. The de-bagging. The unwrapping. The removal of the top half of the bun to facilitate the application of ketchup.
Just like Warhol, Lindeman fails to finish the burger before returning the leftovers to their original container. And, just like Warhol, Lindemann ends with the same awkward moments of silence before directing a few words at the camera. "Ich bin Till Lindemann“, he says. "Und habe gerade einen Pflanzenburger gegessen."
I'm Till Lindemann. And I just ate a plant burger.
Leth's footage also received widespread recognition when it featured in Burger King's #EatLikeAndy Super Bowl ad in 2019, while Lindemann returned with more Veganuary visuals in 2022, appearing in a series of LikeMeat videos where he played the part of German fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld, complete with black leather gloves, thick-rimmed sunglasses and an impressive white pony-tail.