Food for Thought

Two exhibitions this season remind us of the creative interconnectivity between cooking and art-making, fine dining and savoring a blockbuster exhibition. We can%26rsquo;t wait for %26ldquo;Feast: Radical Hospitality in Contemporary Art%26rdquo; at the Blaffer Art Museum (September 6 %26ndash; December 7). Not since Jennifer Rubell served porridge at Art Basel Miami Beach have we been so captivated by the melding of the culinary and visual arts. Stay tuned for a recipe from the Blaffer curatorial kitchen, which adds local ingredients to the traveling show whipped up by the Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago. We%26rsquo;re taken with the historical aspect of %26ldquo;Feast,%26rdquo; which begins in the 1930s and moves forward, but above all, the performances, which include a gingerbread surprise staged by Nigerian-born, London-based Mary Evans that probes the history of slavery via food. Other gastronomic high points include the enactment of Tom Marioni%26rsquo;s salon The Act of Drinking Beer with Friends is the Highest Form of Art (1970-present), complete with guest bartenders at the Blaffer throughout the run of the exhibition and the performance of Lee Mingwei%26rsquo;s tasty participatory The Dining Project. There%26rsquo;s even a roving video filmed by Houston-based Gabriel Martinez, with the artist and guests mapping Houston%26rsquo;s most delish taquerias. Later in the season, the culinary and canvases collide at the Art Institute of Chicago, when %26ldquo;Art and Appetite%26rdquo; stirs up a look at the rendering of glorious food and dinner parties throughout the history of American art, from Raphaelle Peale and Gerald Murphy through Wayne Thiebaud, plus a special PA by the Holy Grail of American paintings, Nighthawks by Edward Hopper (November 12 %26shy;%26ndash; January 27, 2014).;


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