artratcafe CAFE – Playing With Your Food #4 – Christel Assante – eggs plus…

Owl Egg. C. Assante

Staying with the theme of eggs, Playing With Your Food #4 looks at the delicate egg sculptures of French artist Christel Assante.

Assante creates custom designs for buyers, working in mostly quail and goose eggs. Each egg takes her about 3 to 4 days to sculpt. The eggs are lit from a small bulb placed inside through a hole in the bottom.

Assante Egg

In an interview with http://artsdelles.com  Assante talks about her approach to her art: Tell us more about you, how did you start to work on egg shells ? Have you an artistic education ? 
This question is always the most difficult for me, indeed, I don’t know at all what pushes people to adopt this so special technique. It happens often without knowing why. I actually likes drawing on this so symbolic shape, on this so pleasant material because very porous which allow numerous different techniques … The egg shape allows to present scenes which evolve as you turn around it. I like this idea … 
I have always drawn a lot, but, I have a scientific education, not artistic.

Egg CA Detail287

At the interview Assante is asked about preferences in her media:
I always use true eggshells, because I like the material and the magic of the result sometimes so fragile, that’s the most interesting for me. I carve from the ostrich egg shell (the biggest) to emu egg shell, and also nandu, goose, pheasant, duck and quail egg shell. I do not work at all with chicken eggs !! Why? Good question !!

Egg CA205

My own first question would be about what tools can produce such intricate detail in such a hard and delicate surface. She answers this in the interview (follows);  however, I must say it all sounds too simple for a beginner to undertake – a knife and vinegar?!!!! Has anyone out there had experience at this art form?
It is not necessary to have lot of material to start carving eggs, a knife and some vinegar are sufficient to begin with, then you can buy a mini drill. Those of good quality have good performances and avoid most of vibrations (which remain the true problem). Then, don’t forget to use diamond coated drill for the best result … I always bring my equipment with me when I exhibit to show people … but, the best is to practice, at the beginning, sometimes I spent one week on one egg without being sure of the result !!! But, I am very stubborn and I remade the same model until I succeeded.

Egg CA 288

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Credit and Thanks due to: http://artsdelles.com

artratcafe CAFE – Playing With Your Food #3 – Carl Warner

Chocolate Express
Chocolate Express

Playing With Your Food #3 presents British photographer, Carl Warner. Born in Liverpool England in 1963, Carl now lives in Kent and works from his London based studio near to London Bridge’s colourful food emporium of Borough Market. Having worked as a photographer in the advertising business for 25 years Carl stumbled on the idea of making landscapes out of food just over ten years ago and these ‘Foodscapes’ have now brought him world wide acclaim for his very own unique and individual art form.

Cabbage Sea
Cabbage Sea

This has led not only to many commissions for international clients such as Nestle, Unilever and General Mills, but also to a publishing deal with Abrams books which saw the launch of his first book ‘Carl Warner’s Food Landscapes’ in November 2010. His work has been used in children’s hospitals, childhood obesity clinics, by nutritionists and many other good causes to promote better eating habits in both children and adults.

Cucumber Bridge
Cucumber Bridge

Warner blends photography and art to make highly conceptual visual images – broccoli are miniature trees that can create vast forests of connected treetops – Italian Parmesan cheese wheels are rugged, plunging cliffs – smoked salmon is lapping water at sunset reflecting the blazing colors of the sky. In a sense, he’s just a big kid playing with his food.

Salmon Sea
Salmon Sea

In the picture above, a pea pod boat sails away from a land made of bread and potatoes, over a sea of salmon. Warner is an artist who makes one think about food and interact with food on a different level that captures our fondness for illusions, brain teasers and fairy tales all at once.

Vege Head
Vege Head

Carl Warner’s food  images are photographed in different layers and the images can take up to two or three days to build and photograph and then a couple of days retouching and fine-tuning. Carl shoots his scenes using a Hasselblad H3D39 and retouches them on his Mac in Photoshop.
His main influences are Ansel Adams and films such as The Wizard of Oz and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

Bread Village
Bread Village

Warner explains his creative process in the following video:

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Credits and Thanks due to:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk

http://www.bonexpose.com

http://www.youtube.com

Wikipedia

artratcafe CAFE – Playing With Your Food #2 – Prudence Emma Staite

“Dita von Cheese” by Prudence Emma Staite. Based, of course, on popular burlesque performer Dita von Teese.
“Dita von Cheese” by Prudence Emma Staite. Based on popular burlesque performer Dita von Teese.

The second in artratcafe CAFÉ’s new series Playing With Your Food presents Prudence Emma Staite from Gloucestershire, England. Prudence is a contemporary artist who works almost entirely in chocolate, although as you see above she also works in other edible mediums.  Prudence wants people to experience her art with all of their senses. She creates jewelry, paintings, sculpture, games and even entire rooms from chocolate –but the sweet stuff isn’t her only favorite medium –  She also made sculptures of the Colosseum, Spanish Steps and Pope Benedict XVI using enough pizza dough to make 500 pizzas for an exhibit at the Museum of London.

prudence-emma-staite-pizza (2)

brilliant-food-sculpturesRelax in a this chaise lounge made of chocolate by Prudence Emma Staite.

Munro food artPrudence has also recreated famous art works using Smarties. This is a recreation of Andy Warhol’s Marilyn Munroe.

smarties-renoir_1248687iAnd this is her Smarties recreation of Seurat’s Bathers at Asnieres.

Prudence-Emma-Staite1Prudence also used Smarties as her medium in this recreation of Banksy’s Clean Streets Maid graffiti.

bikesculptureAgain, using chocolate, Prudence expresses her understanding of bicycle technology in this chocolate sculpture.

This is sweet and certainly food for thought. It reminds us that anything can be used as a medium for expression. Prudence’s use of everyday edibles to express her creativity is inspiring and opens us up to outside-the-chocolate box thinking. What will you do with all of those left over goodies from Christmas?

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Credits and Thanks due to: Wikipedia / Google Images / images.inquisitr.com / chinadaily.com.cn/Agencies / V&A Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green, east London / http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/

artratcafe CAFE – Playing With Your Food #1- Arcimboldo

Whimsical Portrait by Arcimboldi
Whimsical Portrait by Arcimboldo

Today artratcafe CAFÉ begins a new  series – Playing With Your Food. This series will feature historical and contemporary artists who use food in their art – both real and illusionary.

Self Portrait by Arcimboldo
Self Portrait by Arcimboldo

 

 

 

 

 

This week the featured artist is the Renaissance painter Giuseppe Arcimboldo (1527 – 1593). Arcimboldo was an Italian painter famous for creating imaginative portrait heads made entirely of  fruits, vegetables, flowers and fish. His conventional work, on traditional religious subjects, has fallen into oblivion, but his portraits of human heads made up of organic objects, were greatly admired by his contemporaries and remain a source of fascination today.

In 1573 Arcimboldo created a series of heads based on the four seasons. All are oil on canvas and can be seen in The Louvre, Paris, France.

Spring
Spring

Arcimboldo was perhaps the first artist to use food to create an image, though his work was in paint, not made of actual food. From a distance, his portraits look like normal human portraits. However, individual objects in each portrait were actually overlapped together to make various anatomical shapes of a human. They were carefully constructed by his imagination.

Art critics debate whether Arcimboldo’s paintings were simply whimsical or the product of a deranged mind.  A majority of scholars hold to the view, however, that given the Renaissance fascination with riddles, puzzles, and the bizarre, Arcimboldo, far from being mentally imbalanced, catered to the taste of his times.

Summer
Summer
Autumn
Autumn
Winter
Winter
Vertumnus
Vertumnus

Vertumnus – 1591 (oil on wood. exhibited at Skoklosters Slott. Balsta, Sweden) was particularly appreciated by everyone, especially by the Emperor Rudolph 11. It is a head-and-shoulder portrait of the Emperor, showing him in the form of Vertumnus, the ancient Roman god of vegetation and transformation.

The job of a renaissance court portraitist was to produce likenesses of his sovereigns to display at the palace and give to foreign dignitaries or prospective brides. It went without saying the portraits should be flattering. Yet Giuseppe Arcimboldo painted his royal patron, the Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II, as a heap of fruits and vegetables. With pea pod eyelids and a gourd for a forehead, he looks less like a king than a crudité platter.

The Admiral
The Admiral

Lucky for Arcimboldo, Rudolf had a sense of humor. And he had probably grown accustomed to the artist’s visual wit. Arcimboldo served the Hapsburg family for more than 25 years, creating oddball “composite heads” made of sea creatures, flowers, dinner roasts and other materials.

Arcimboldo’s work had a surreal quality long before the advent of the Surrealist Art movement, and his ‘food portraits’ no doubt inspired many of the other artists who will be featured in this series.

 

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Credits and Thanks due to: Wikipedia / Google Images / http://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture http://webecoist.momtastic.com/