CFP: Invisible Culture: Aesthetes and Eaters – Food and Artistry
Call for Papers Date:
In Visible Culture, Issue 14, Aesthetes and Eaters – Food and Artistry
Guest Editors: Alexandra Alisauskas and Paula Pinto
Deadline for completed papers and manuscripts: December 15, 2008
Submissions and inquiries should be sent, via email, to
The peer-reviewed, electronic journal In Visible Culture invites papers and projects that explore the role of food in art and food as an art form. This has two main implications: a reconsideration of the non-visual senses in art spectatorship and a bringing together of the henomenological and social in various forms of aesthetic experience.
The 2006 Dokumenta art fair in Kassel, Germany included Ferran Adria head chef of the experimental restaurant El Bulli in its roster of artists. Such an inclusion speaks to the ultimate confluence of concerns in both the art world
and the world of cuisine – namely the paramount role of food beyond its biological function. This event specifically highlighted the role of food as a mediator in aesthetic experience.
Whether recent instantiations, such as Rikrit Tiravinija’s gallery feasts, or historical practices such as Daniel Spoerri’s EatGallery, Gordon Matta-Clarks Food Restaurant, or Judy Chicago’s The Dinner Party, the use of food in
artistic practices has had various symbolic, cultural and aesthetic resonances. Food as a loaded material, and food as a form of representation might thus participate not
only in questions about the form of the artwork (a literal dematerialization of the art object through consumption), but the specific role of artworks and artists. It might also present a different form of engagement with the artwork
that demands a sensual or social dimension, therefore forcing us to reconsider the traditional role of the spectator in aesthetic experience.
Similarly, food production and the theorization of food preparation as a form of artistry, share with art projects a concern with the role of the (food) object, and its formal components. It might also seek to reinvest the individual’s
engagement with food and eating as a practice. As such, this journal issue seeks to consider the potential role of food in or as an aesthetic encounter. How might food reformulate or even repudiate typical aesthetic conventions? How
might food and food practices aestheticize forms of everyday life? How might the use of food in the aesthetic realm present a reconsideration of the role of the artwork? Submissions in the form of 2,500-6,000 word papers (along with a 500 word abstract), as well as experimental digital projects, are welcome from all disciplines.
Areas of inquiry for submissions may include, but are not limited to, the following topics and questions:
- Premodern uses of food in and as art (Giovanni Archimbaldo, Antonin Careme’s food sculptures)
- Food as a material or process in the historical avant-garde
and the neo-avant-garde (Daniel Spoerri, Piero Manzoni)
- The role of food in artistic projects in the 1960s and 1970s (Gordon Matta-Clark, Allan Kaprow’s Happenings, Food in Pop Art, Tom Marioni’s gallery bar, Fluxus food practices)
- Community, sociality and the role of eating together in aesthetic collectives
- The rhetoric of artistry in food preparation (chefs such as Ferran Adria and El Bulli’s book and DVD productions; Michael Ruhlman’s series of books on cooking
and artistry; Escoffier and his cookbooks)
- Food and questions of the subject in performance (whether food rituals, or performance art)
- Pleasure and food
– potential of critical engagement?
- The senses in general as a mode of aesthetic engagement
- The space and design of food
– the art gallery, the restaurant, or the agricultural sphere; the nature of the dish
- Matters of “taste” whether physiological or social
- Can food be art?
- Lifestyle, and the aestheticization of life practices through food practices (Slow Food, Locavore movement)
- Food production and the conception social movements (artistic or otherwise)
In Visible Culture is also currently seeking submissions for book and exhibition
reviews (600-1000 word). To submit book or exhibition review proposals please
In Visible Culture: An Electronic Journal for Visual Culture is a peer-reviewed
journal dedicated to explorations of the material and political dimensions of
cultural practices: the means by which cultural objects and communities are
produced, the historical contexts in which they emerge, and the regimes of
knowledge or modes of social interaction to which they contribute.
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