In celebration of C-VILLE’s big Food & Drink issue, which comes out today, I hereby issue a Green Scene PSA about Art You Should Not Miss. I speak of the "Harvest" show currently at the Bridge, and in particular, this piece:
It’s called "Food Spectrum," and you can see what it is: five shelves of home-canned food. When I walked into the gallery and spotted this, I think I made some sort of "ooOOOO!" sound. Then, looking at the gallery list a few minutes later, I was not surprised to learn that it was assembled by Patrick Costello, a local artist I’ve written about before.
Patrick’s work, both artmaking and curating, often highlights the products of fastidious labor, and this piece is right in line with that interest. The foods—all kinds of jams, jellies, pickles, sauces—were canned by a number of different people, and the simplicity of the piece lets the labor they represent shine through.
Home canning sure makes for some purty-lookin’ jars, but it also ties right into the need for stronger connections between our appetites and our environments. If people know how to preserve food, they can be that much more supportive of local farmers—buying more cukes in July, for example, then pickling them and enjoying in January. The beauty of this piece is not only in the lovely colors and textures of the foods themselves, but in the fact that people took time to put some love into (I’m guessing at least partly) local produce.
Drop by and drool!