The Art of Food: A Taste Sensation for the Eyes

March 18th, 2012  |  Published in March 2012, On View  |  1 Comment

Commander in Chief- Eric Brass

George Bernard Shaw once wrote, “There is no love sincerer than the love of food.”  Food keeps us alive. It nourishes the body and keeps us growing healthy and strong. But food also serves as fuel for the artistic soul. That idea was embraced by the Carnegie Visual and Performing Arts Center in Covington, Kentucky with their newest exhibit, The Art of Food.

The Art of Food is a feast for the eyes. In its sixth year running, Food celebrates food as an art form, inviting artists to use their artistic skills to investigate food. Artists have been exploring food within their artwork for many years. When I attended the exhibit on a quiet Monday afternoon, I had a preconceived notion of what I would find; the typical photos and paintings of fruit in a bowl.  The Art of Food was a breath of fresh air and held some fun surprises. Participating artists include Eric Brass, Leah Busch, Marisa Dipaola, Sayaka Ganz, Sandra Gross, Jeffrey Hayes, Vicky Kimble and many more.

The artists participating in the exhibit made an artistic choice to think outside the proverbial “dinner plate” and embraced a real sense of playfulness in their artwork. For example, there was a whole room dedicated to toast. Leah Busch and Sandra Gross took what was a smaller display last year and let their imaginations run wild. Each handcrafted slice of toast, composed of fired glass and various glazes, represents many manifestations of toast. The varied states of toast include slices topped with butter, jam, cheese and eggs (all made of fired glass). More creative slices included toast with images of Marilyn Monroe, Elvis and the Virgin Mary. My personal favorite slice is the “Rothko Toast”, adorned with colors of orange, red, and brown with Rothko-like paint strokes all aglow. This particular piece tickled the artistic nerd within me.

Eric Brass, through mixed media collages, explores pop culture icons such as Bill Cosby, Bill Clinton, and Andy Warhol by juxtaposing them with images of products they are culturally attached to. For example a portrait of Bill Clinton, entitled “Commander in Chief”, is composed of acrylic paint and images of McDonald’s French fries. A portrait of Paula Deen, entitled “The Ecstasy,” is made up of images of Land O’Lakes butter.

The humor-infused artwork of Sara Pearce weaves vintage illustrations, painting (acrylic and watercolor), and found paper products together to create beautiful mixed media collages. Take in the intricacies of the mini culinary creations composed of balloons by Vicky Kimble. Indulge your senses in a large sculptural piece comprised of birthday cakes, party favors, cupcakes and various other party themed objects entitled “Because it’s My Birthday” created by Pam Kravetz and Sharon Butler. Soak up the sweets of Marisa Dipaola with a summer dress, necklace and sandals composed of dipping dots, marshmallow bunnies and peeps.

Admission to The Art of Food is free and runs through April 13. Come for the art but stay for the food, because in this situation they are one and the same.

–Shawn Daniell


  1. Vicky Kimble says:

    March 20th, 2012at 12:31 pm(#)

    Hi Shawn~

    Thanks so much for a great article on THE ART OF FOOD exhibit at The Carnegie.

    I have been a professional balloon artist for the past 14 years and have developed my Balloosion technique (the art of uninflated balloons and other materials to create lasting balloon sculptures) throughout my career. Usually, when I tell someone that I’m a balloon artist, their first reaction is the stigma, “Oh, you make dogs and swords at birthday parties”, or “You make those centerpieces with three balloons on a string”. It is one of my goals to dispel that misconception!! LOL Balloosion is an unfamiliar art form (mostly because I am one of the few people on the planet that does it) but it is really heartwarming to see it get the recognition as a legitimate art form.

    This is my first year as a participating artist. All the exhibits are truly amazing and it is an honor and privilege to be a part of it!!

    Thanks again for the kind comments and the exposure :-).

    All the best~

    Vicky Kimble