FOOD: Process, Subject, Metaphor, Praxis, Identity, Community…

FOR CLASS NEXT WEEK 9/18/12, we will be taking a different approach to the seminar.  As discussed in class, each of you will make a contribution that relates to the topic of food, which can be seen as an instance of nature, art and technology combined.  The contribution that you make can take an expressive and/or analytical form–in other words, what you tell, do, make and/or share could take the form of artwork, a reading, a presentation on an issue/book/film/location that includes leading discussion, a narrated walk, etc.  Where class takes place next week will depend on the contributions that you propose.  For this reason, as I mentioned before, I would like you to email me [] with your idea, including how much time you will need and the location, if outside of the classroom, by Sunday 9/16/12 so that I will have time to come up with an itinerary for Tuesday that I can post on the blog Monday evening.

While the forms are open-ended what I am hoping for are creative and critical engagements with food that will lead to good discussion.  This doesn’t mean that we can’t also experience community and enjoy ourselves, but I will expect that you lead or instigate discussion related to your contribution.

BELOW are links to the artistic examples that I showed and we discussed in class, including the most recent and more ETB projects that we didn’t get to.  At the end of the list are a few additions, including those that some of you (thanks Mara and Oren) mentioned in class.  Please feel free to continue adding to the list!

Finally, there are links in the syllabus that offer public and journalistic accounts of the debate

Joseph Beuys (Fettecke, 1960)

Andy Warhol
Tomato Soup Cans

Carolee Schneemann (Meat Joy, 1964)

John Latham, a part-time teacher at St. Martin’s School of Art in London, invites his students to participate in an “event-based” artwork wherein they chewed pages from a library copy of Clement Greenberg’s Art and Culture. The masticated pulp is dissolved, distilled, and fermented in glass bottles before the artist attempts to return the overdue tome. Chew and Spit: Art and Culture (1966) is rejected by the librarian but acquired by the Museum of Modern Art.

Adrian Piper (Catalysis, 1970) and Calling Cards

Tom Marioni instigates The Act of Drinking Beer with Friends is the Highest Form of Art (1970)

Gordon Matta-Clark, together with Carol Goodden, FOOD (1971–1973)

As an experiment in sustainability tactics, it provided the precedent for more recent alternative funding models that incorporate food, such as InCUBATE (Chicago) and FEAST (Brooklyn).

Judy Chicago’s installation The Dinner Party (1974–1979)

Martha Rosler’s feminist parody video and performance Semiotics in the Kitchen (1975)

Agnes Denes creates a landmark environmental art project with Wheatfield — A Confrontation, Battery Landfill Park, Downtown Manhattan (1982)

Ann Hamilton to restore the original kitchen and dining room. The resulting work, Mess Hall (1989), becomes a vital community gathering space for the artists-in-residence program.

Felix Gonzalez-Torres’ untitled candy spills, Untitled (1991)

Peggy Diggs’ The Domestic Violence Milk Carton Project (1992)

Rikrit Tiravanija
Rikrit T. The Land (1998–ongoing), two working rice fields in Thailand cultivated as a space for social engagement.

Gabriel Orozco

Janine Antoni literally gnaws away two six-hundred-pound cubes, one chocolate and one lard, to create Gnaw (1992)
Janine Antoni’s Gnawing Idea in Gastronomica

Marina Abramovic receives the Golden Lion Award for Best Artist at the 1997 Venice Biennale for her video and performance piece Balkan Baroque, which features the artist scrubbing the remaining shreds of flesh from thousands of bloody beef bones in reference to the war in Yugoslavia.

The link below is to an interview with Abramovic conducted by a reporter from The Guardian. The discussion gives a much better sense of what motivated Abramovic and how the Balkan Baroque work fits into her overall artistic approach.

Minerva Cuevas creates Mejor Vida Corp. (1998–ongoing)

Conflict Kitchen

DNAid (2000–2002)


Critical Art Ensemble, with Beatriz de Costa and Shyh-shiun Shyu, present Free Range Grain (2004)

Laura Parker, Taste of Place (2004)

Bill Talen presents The Reverend Billy Starbucks Interventions (2004)

Zhang Huan dons a suit made from raw meat as part of the public performance My New York (2007)

Natalie Jeremijenko

Art Practical Interview with Terri Cohn about Food Art


Margaret Atwood (1969).  The Edible Woman. (recommendation from Mara)
This wikipedia entry is a good general introduction to the novel. JSTOR would certainly also have reviews of the book worth reading as well.

Julie and Julia (2009); book of the same title published in 2005
The link below is to the original blog entries/project that the book and movie were based on.

The Botany of Desire

Leon Johnson (recommendation from Oren)