Whether you find pleasure in it, or see it merely as a means of survival, food is a life source that unites us all in our need for sustenance and everyday rituals that define our most primal instincts. The sharing of meals can also a symbolic and emotional experience, playing an important role in religious and secular festivities alike, and our relationship to food is linked to a host of wider factors such as wealth and class, social milieu and consumption. As such, food has its own particular place in visual art, with the power to evoke emotions from nostalgia to disgust.
Yesterday marked the opening of a new exhibition entitled “Food for the Eyes” at C/O Berlin. Focussing on the history of food photography, the curation focuses on the history of the use of food on film through three themes: Still Life, Around the Table and Playing with Food. From reinterpretations of the classic arrangement of food to intimate scenes of joyous social gatherings and the experimental usage of food as symbolic props, the exhibit showcases a range of works from well-known artists such as Nan Goldin, Irving Penn, Cindy Sherman and Martin Parr.
Arranged against walls that are painted citric bright, the works are bright, vivid, eye-catching, absurd and intriguing. They explore the aesthetic value of foodstuffs through the lens of fine art, journalism, fashion and advertisement and play on our innate reactions to the role of food and all its connotations in everyday life.
Food for the Eyes is open at C/O Berlin, Hardenbergstraße 22-24, until 7th September. Entrance cost = 10€ regular, 6€ reduced.
Featured image: Clementines by Daniel Gordon.