Storytelling and Food Salon

In May 2014, Change Food teamed up with Foodstand, a project of Purpose, to present “Storytelling and Food,” an event that asked the question, “What power do stories have in creating a better food system?” Foodstand is a new mobile app focused in rallying the largest good food community to support more sustainable producers around the world. Foodstand is being launched by Purpose, the social business that moves people to remake the world.

We heard from five artists working in a variety of media, each of whom shared their work and how they are using it to make people think, question, learn, or, in the words of one presenter, “re-engage with food.” After the presentations, a panel discussion explored the role of art in the food movement.

Video of the talks and panel discussion are available in the Change Food Library.

The work of these artists demonstrates the role that art can play in inspiring conversation and thought and perhaps even motivating people to make changes when it comes to their relationship with food. A picture of a doughnut set ablaze, film of seeds sprouting set to music, a poem about family and cooking and a placemat with colored squares inspired by produce and reminding you to “get your daily dose of color” may tap into emotions unlikely to be engaged by, for example, a newspaper article about nutrition.

Clearly, as Change Food’s Founder & Executive Director Diane Hatz put it while moderating the panel, art can “raise the voice of the food movement.”

  • Ava Chin at Storytelling and Food – Ava Chin

    Hi, everybody. Can you hear me alright, just out of curiosity? Okay. I can project because I used to be a slam poet. This is a food poem called “Wun Yee. Muk Yee. Cloud Ear Fungus. Does it grow on land or in the sea?” My grandfather holds the tiny cloud ears running under a tap. His restaurant worker hands acting like a colander, sifting dust and water from food. I watch from my perch on the kitchen stool as the tiny black fungi the size my shirt buttons lying … Read More

  • Henry Hargreaves at Storytelling and Food – Henry Hargreaves

    Photographer Henry Hargreaves uses food in surprising ways in his work, with the goal of “trying to get people to re-connect with food in a fun way.” Some of the work he showed included: Jello Presidents – portraits of each U.S. president created out of gelatin, color coded based on the elements of the US flag – red, white, blue and stars. The colors reflect their political party, how many terms they served and if they died in office. Food Maps – maps of countries and continents created using foods native … Read More

  • Sean Kaminsky and Lee Brooks at Storytelling and Food – Sean Kaminsky and Lee Brooks

    Sean: Thank you first of all for having us here. We’re very excited. Lee’s going to be joining me in a minute. And I didn’t actually realize that Lee was a singer. And if I had known I would have had him do more singing in Open Sesame, The Story of Seeds. But I wanted to start and just give a little background in terms of how the film began. I started the film in 2009. It was originally going to be an experimental project looking at what happens when … Read More

  • Tattfoo Tan at Storytelling and Food – Tattfoo Tan

    Hi! My name is Tattfoo. Thanks for coming. Thanks for having me today. I’m an artist and I don’t do any photograph or painting. But I do what they currently call social sculpture. So basically it’s just how I live my life. So I’m just curious and I learn things. And then once I learn things, I practice them. After that I teach them. So it’s sort of like that process that I’m doing. And since we are in a start-up company, tech company. I also envelop that sort of … Read More

  • Panel Discussion at Storytelling and Food

    The work of these artists demonstrates the role that art can play in inspiring conversation and thought and perhaps even motivating people to make changes when it comes to their relationship with food. A picture of a doughnut set ablaze, film of seeds sprouting set to music, a poem about family and cooking and a placemat with colored squares inspired by produce and reminding you to “get your daily dose of color” may tap into emotions unlikely to be engaged by, for example, a newspaper article about nutrition. Clearly, as … Read More