Thursday, August 9, 2018

IT'S ART (BUT IS IT FOOD?)

My pal Kevin Kinsella alerted me to a recent fad (I don’t think it’s quite a meme yet) on German Twitter where people are making sandwiches in the style of great visual artists.  Apparently it was started by a woman named Marie Sophie Hingst, with the hashtag #KunstGeschichteAlsBrotbelag. And others have joined in, as is the way with twitter.
Some are very literal indeed, just food cut into shapes to resemble works of art.   



But even before I clicked on the link Kevin sent me I was thinking of Mondrian and Rothko – and evidently so were others:




My own small addition to the genre is inspired by Carl Andre, top American minimalist, famous for his gridding, and it’s not a sandwich, but store-bought cheese tidbits arranged like this:


Of course, any work by Carl Andre would have been far more rigorous, far more geometrically precise, than my work, but then I suppose he wouldn’t have been using store-bought cheese tidbits


Monday, August 6, 2018

IT'S FOOD (BUT IS IT ART?)

Food photography, it’s a funny old thing isn’t it?
      Here’s a rather wonderful picture of the “Housemade Potato Chips - gorgonzola and calabrian chili dip, parmesan, black pepper” at Stella Barra Pizzeria on Sunset Boulevard, in Los Angeles.


I didn’t take that picture, although I was there, and I did eat some of the chips.  It was taken by Lisa Jane Persky who’s a "proper" and very accomplished photographer.  And I know that if I’d taken took a picture of those chips, they just wouldn’t have looked that good.
Here is what photographer Ellen Auerbach had to say on the subject: 


And here’s one I did earlier, when I was trying to become the “Cheese and pickle doostep sandwich” at The Royal Oak Inn, in Woodchester, Gloucestershire in England.  I guess I failed in my becoming.  On balance I think that was probably for the best.




Saturday, August 4, 2018

POTATO AMUSEMENTS

I’ve been thinking I might go on a road trip to Idaho next month, and I suppose I must have googled a few tourists destinations, but I was still surprised (to the extent that anything about the internet surprises me anymore), that The Idaho Potato Museum in the town of Blackfoot, came up on Facebook as a recommended page. I was already thinking I might go there but if Facebook recommends it  … well …


The museum’s Facebook page contains this image: 


It’s one that many of us have seen before, and it's there because the museum has been asked to verify whether this is a bona fide picture of an Idaho Potato Queen.  Alas they can neither confirm nor deny.
These models are easier to authenticate – 


They’re on the 2015 calendar for the Bavarian Farmers Association.  The cast includes Bavaria's then reigning "Potato Queen," Kathrin Schoderer. This is her apparently:


And here for comparison is a picture of Marilyn Monroe in a very well-tailored potato sack.  The image is available at the Idaho Potato Museum on a fridge magnet.




I would have thought that an erotic obsession with potatoes is one of the more minor paraphilias and yet, and yet …

        James Johnson was an Englishman who went on a 5 day drug binge with some friends, earlier this year, and was eventually arrested while wearing women’s underwear and filling a hotel bathtub with potatoes at the Travelodge in Eastleigh, near Southampton.

He was prosecuted not for potato or underwear offences but for possession of MDMA, 2CB, and 5-MAPB with intent to supply.   In court, the judge asked Johnson why he’d done it and Johnson replied: “It felt like the right thing to do at the time,” which I suppose is the only reason why anybody ever does anything ever, illegal or legal.

While images of Mr. Johnson remain elusive, I have been able to find a picture of the Travelodge in question.