Building on the Radical Kitchen: Recipes for Building Community and Creating Change programme launched in 2017, Serpentine presents a second season of its lunchtime gatherings in the Serpentine Pavilion, designed by Frida Escobedo. On Thursday 30 August, researcher and designer Francesca Sarti (Arabeschi di Latte) reflects on clay.
On selected Thursdays over the summer, artists, activists and researchers gathered with the public to consider different global foodstuffs and elements – their stories, their movements and their relationship to time, empire and landscape. Visitors were invited to share food and reflect on empire, geological time, exchange and decolonisation, themes inspired by Escobedo’s design, which draws on the domestic architecture of her native Mexico and British materials and context, specifically the Prime Meridian line at the Royal Observatory.
Each lunchtime session focused on a different element or food item, tracing how ingredients such as sugar, grains and chilli have shaped the globalised world, and how consumption, exchange, politics and economics determine – and are determined by – these elements.
Radical Kitchen 2018 brought together questions generated through two major research strands undertaken by Serpentine Projects. The ongoing Rights to the City programme addresses housing rights, racial discrimination, privatisation of public space and the politics of care. Launching in 2018, General Ecology marks the Serpentine Galleries’ commitment to addressing questions around ecology, complexity, organisation and climate change.
Arabeschi di Latte is a design studio founded by Francesca Sarti in 2001 and based in London since 2013. The studio’s mission is to experiment with new design concepts that relate to food, focusing on its fascinating power to create situations and relationships and using food as a prior angle to investigate cultural conditions and contemporary rituals. Blurring the boundaries between food and design, Arabeschi di Latte has created and exhibited a variety of projects around the world, from interactive installations to temporary cafes, bespoke food concepts and performances. Works by Arabeschi di Latte have been commissioned by a variety of partners including A/D/O New York; V&A, London; Design Museum; Nouveau Musee de Monaco; MAXXI; MACRO; Fiorucci Art Trust; The Vinyl Factory; Selfridges, Marni, Fendi, Kenzo, Zegna; Molteni, Boffi, Cesarstone, Pitti Immagine; The New York Times; RCS; San Pellegrino and Illy. Francesca Sarti is lecturing and heading workshops in various universities and institutions including ECAL and HEAD in Switzerland, SPD, Politecnico and Domus Academy in Milan and IUAV in Venice.
Radical Kitchen 2018 was a collaboration with Nicoletta Fiorucci, Founder of Fiorucci Art Trust, and was supported by Aesop.