Curious Trends

30/05/2011

DIY food lab: art meets science in culinary and tableware design


We appear to be moving away from overly complicated designer cuisine towards more basic, home grown and healthily prepared foodstuffs. Kitchenware and table accoutrements are starting to reflect the new mood. Meantime, our focus is shifting away from culinary artistry to food science. Nevertheless, the aesthetic appeal and presentation of our meals, our kitchen and tableware are becoming increasingly important. How long will it be before we have national museums dedicated to the art and science of food and dining?


The latest curious food trends include:

Futuristic food solutions:

Haworth’s Lunch Lab (click on the link to read more).

The Experimental Food Society is a club with speaker events where,“jelly mongers, cake sculptors, sugarcraft artists, mobile chocolate adventurers and one-of-a-kind dining conceptualists to name a few… are joined by their love of food and their desire to push it to new levels, often fusing it with other forms such as science and art.”

Marc Brettilot's curious culinary designs - like these petit fours to be dissolved slowly on the tongue and breathed in through the mouth. Ingredients are egg white, sugar, hot pepper, gelatin, agar-agar and mint essence.

Food architecture:


Food architects: Bompas and Parr, known for their jellies, launched a range of meat jewellery at Adam Entwisle’s SS11 catwalk show at London Fashion Week. “Meat jewellery re-introduces a forgotten piece of kitchenalia that can be used to accessorise both meat dishes and dresses. In the early nineteenth century, edible centrepieces were garnished with elaborate skewers called attelets. Chefs threaded whole truffles and blanched coxcombs onto grand dishes such as boars heads. The solid silver skewers can be used to truss quail or to garnish pigs heads, but are equally as elegant brooches or hair accessories.”

Kitchenware and food as design art:

Primitive wooden cutlery:

Vintage curiosity and bread sculptures:


Simon Fujiwara’s La Carniceria, from the series Spanish Still Lives, 2010:

Corina Zych’s Novacula. In a time when the refrigerator orders supplies of milk and eggs and the hob knows when a pan will commence frying, or will boil over, this attempts to “reconnect us with a closer understanding of where our food comes from and its elemental processes of preparation.” These knife blocks encourage the user to “enjoy the simple action of withdrawing and replacing kitchen knives whilst possibly stirring more basic and unsettling instincts within.”

Ja Kyung Shin’s old silver plated spoon sculpture:

Juliane Scholss Breakfast Bouquet:

Sebastian Sched's Lidded Box:

Geoffrey Mann’s ‘cross-fire’ cutlery and tableware and ‘shine’ candelabra:


Ronald Pennell's The Last Queen, honeycomb inspired glass bowl:

Simone ten Hompel’s beakers, bowls and spoons:

Kina Bjorlund’s antiquarian foodie candlesticks:

Bia animal egg cups:



DIY kitchen and cooking solutions:

Nether Wallop Trading’s herb dryer, was shortlisted for the Chelsea Flower Show 2011 New Product of the Year Award and provides a natural way to air-dry chillies, herbs, mushrooms and seeds.

General Trading Company’s Tomato Planters, made and distributed by Turtle Bags, are made from recycled cement bags and provide a creative and sustainable solution to growing-your-own in limited space. The fair trade planters support both a turtle conservation project and a women's charity in Bangladesh.

Both of the above are ideally suited to the back to basics DIY style kitchen, as shown here with coconut wood work surfaces and copper pans.

For cooking outdoors, DIY ovens include the traditional wood burning stove…

Or Hartman’s Jamie Oliver Fire Pit Set. “The complete solution for any outdoor occasion. From grilling, chilling and keeping warm when the sun goes down, this set can be used all year round.”

This may be used in conjunction with the Kadai Charcoal maker, winner of the 2011 Chelsea Flower Show Product of the Year Award.


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