FINAL MAJOR PROJECT. WEEK 14.

Pink #2 (left), Pink #1 (right). from Dalston Anatomy, Lorenzo Vitturi, 2013.

I’ve spent some time revisiting the Feast For The Eyes exhibition again via the catalogue/book that accompanied it. This time I’ve been specifically cross-referencing work in there that has a race and heritage context with my own project development.

I realise how much food as a subject has the potential to help ‘look into the face of the Other’ (Sealy, 2019, pg. 4) and I’m wondering if my own origin story isn’t somewhere in this mix of thinking and experience. Is there for example a necessary passage of my work shot in Italy itself?

But I just want to take a look at Lorenzo Vitturi’s project Dalston Anatomy as it’s been referenced in context with my project a few times by tutors and peers.

Vitturi’s project was a time capsule almost, a way to hold the Ridley Road Market in East London in it’s place in space and time before gentrification began to encroach on the area and alter it forever. The market was, like many London street markets, a blend of cultures: African, Turkish, British etc. Vitturi used items sold in the market as vibrant sculptures alongside portraits and snapshots of the day to day life of it and frequently used the diptych as a way to link these image types. He also presented the work as a market stall installation in itself.

Installation from Dalston Anatomy. Lorenzo Vitturi, 2013.

Although our work is visually different there are inherent similarities at play in terms of vibrancy and colour, playfulness, the expression of the sculptural qualities of food, the diptych form, and the desire to examine the sense of the ‘exotic and the ordinary’ (Bright, 2019, pg. 302) in people and their relationship to food items. However, our work differs in that Vitturi’s doesn’t hold the same sensuous quality for me via the direct interplay and experience of people to the food. They are curiously kept apart (unless when used to hide a person face such as in Pink #2 above). So I find I miss that sense of relationship within the work. Though that’s not to deny the celebration of diversity within it which, for me, is Dalston anatomy’s strength.

The project exemplifies the fact that the food stuffs and quality of this specific location ‘cannot be reproduced because they are cultivated in the unique terrain and climate that simply cannot simply be replicated elsewhere’ (Di Giovine & Brulotte, 2014, pg. 7).

REFERENCES

Bright, S. 2019. Feast For The Eyes. New York, Aperture.

Di Giovine, M & Brulotte, R. (2016). Food and Foodways in Cultural Heritage. In: Edible Identities: Food as Cultural Heritage. London: Routledge. Available at: https://www.academia.edu/12647555/Food-and-Foodways-as-Cultural-Heritage?email-work-card=title[Accessed 3rd Oct 2020].