FOOD (New York restaurant)

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FOOD
Restaurant information
Established October 1971 (October 1971)
Closed 1974 (1974)
Previous owner(s) Carol Goodden, Tina Girouard, Gordon Matta-Clark
Food type home-cooked, artisanal
City New York City
State New York
Country United States
Coordinates 40°43′35″N 74°00′07″W / 40.7265097°N 74.0019006°W / 40.7265097; -74.0019006

FOOD was an important artist-run restaurant in SoHo, New York. FOOD was founded by artists Carol Goodden, Tina Girouard and Gordon Matta-Clark. FOOD was considered one of the first important restaurants in SoHo.[1] Other individuals who were involved with FOOD included Suzanne Harris and Rachel Lew.[2] FOOD was a place where artists in SoHo, especially those who were later involved in Avalanche magazine and the Anarchitecture group, could meet and enjoy food together.[2] FOOD was considered to be both a business and an artistic "intervention in an urban setting."[2] It has also been called a "landmark that still resonates in the history and mythology of SoHo in the 1970s."[3]

History[edit]

Before they founded FOOD, Goodden and Matta-Clark were already cooking for artists in New York and were already known for throwing dinner parties for friends, mainly hosted at their loft.[4] In 1971, they roasted an entire pig under the Brooklyn Bridge.[5] The roast was known as the Brooklyn Bridge Event.[4] The Event was accompanied by outdoor sculpture and celebrated the opening of the Alternative Gallery Space on Greene Street.[6] The sculptures at the pig roast had been curated by Alanna Heiss of the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA.)[6] Music for the roast was done by Dickie Landry and the Phillip Glass Ensemble.[6]

Matta-Clark suggested to Goodden the idea for a restaurant, which she found appealing.[6] They chose a location in SoHo on the corner of Prince and Wooster streets.[7] There was a struggling restaurant there called Comidas Criollas and Goodden negotiated the lease from them.[6] At that time, SoHo was considered a cultural desert, with struggling businesses.[8] Goodden had access to an inheritance which she was able to use as the initial investment for the restaurant.[9] Gooden and Matta-Clark wanted to create a space where they could help their friends find jobs while giving people a place to eat in what would later be known as SoHo.[10] Matta-Clark and Girouard began to renovate the place.[11] FOOD opened on October 1971 at 127 Prince Street.[12] During the renovations, Matta-Clark was inspired to do some of his original "cutting" art works.[2]

FOOD was intended to be a simple project designed to bring the artistic community together.[12] Artists were invited to be guest chefs, as well as working at the restaurant on a regular basis.[11] There was no ordering of many different dishes at FOOD, diners ate what was offered on that day.[13] The menu was simple and affordable.[14] Meals included items like raw mackerel in wasabi sauce, Creole-style stuffed tongue and anchovy onion pie.[4] FOOD was considered to be an "active and dynamic site" which served nearly one hundred people daily in 1972.[2]

In 1972 Matta-Clark created a 43-minute documentary of the restaurant.[15] He was often seen as the center of the energy surrounding FOOD restaurant.[16]

FOOD only lasted about three years with the original founders.[17] After Matta-Clark lost interest in the project and Goodden was left to carry on mostly on her own.[14] Eventually, the restaurant was handed over to new operators who ran FOOD until the 1980s.[18] However, FOOD did not retain its artistic roots under the new management.[19]

Legacy[edit]

FOOD was said to inspire others who create food art, or work in the field of relational art."[17] Many famous artists and performers, such as Donald Judd, Robert Rauschenberg and John Cage created meals at FOOD.[17] The cooking and the meals themselves were a kind of a performance art,[20] especially the soup.[5] Gooden felt that soup could be used as a sort of "painting" for the table.[21] Matta-Clark developed a meal that he based on bones called Matta-Bones[22] which cost $4.[17] After the meal, the bones were used to create necklaces for the diner to wear.[10] Matta-Bones once served over 100 people and after they ate, Richard Peck scrubbed the bones clean in the kitchen after which Hisachika Takahashi, an assistant to Rauschenberg and a jeweler, drilled holes in the bones so that they could be strung onto rope.[23] Another unusual meal was made of living brine shrimp swimming in egg whites[14] called Alive.[22] Perhaps the most unusual dinner was never realized: Mark di Suvero wished to serve meals through the windows of the restaurant using a crane and directing diners to eat with tools such as screwdrivers and hammers.[24]

FOOD was noted for using fresh and seasonal foods, which was a "vaguely countercultural" idea for the time.[11] FOOD was one of the first New York restaurants to serve sushi[25] which had been suggested by Takahashi.[11] Another unusual feature of FOOD was that it was one of the first places to serve vegetarian meals.[25] FOOD also "championed" the use of the open kitchen which is seen in many modern restaurants.[26]

Other famous artists who were frequently seen at FOOD included the members of Mabou Mines, the Phillip Glass group and dancers of Grand Union.[16]

FOOD 1971/2013[edit]

The Frieze Art Fair recognized the contributions of FOOD to the artistic community in 2013 by inviting several chefs from the original FOOD to participate at the fair.[5] Goodden and Girouard both contributed to the tribute of FOOD with Goodden preparing her famous soups and Girouard paying homage to the pig roast under the Brooklyn Bridge.[26] FOOD 1971/2013 was created by curator, Ceclia Alemani and conceived of as a special project for the fair.[24]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Justin (October 29, 2009). "Carol Goodden & Gordon Matta-Clark's Food". Broken City Lab. Retrieved May 29, 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c d e Clintberg, Mark (2011). "The Story of FOOD". Canadian Centre for Architecture (CCA). Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  3. ^ "Food, Gordon Matta-Clark". Electronic Arts Intermix. Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  4. ^ a b c Waxman, Lori (2008). "The Banquet Years: FOOD, A SoHo Restaurant" (PDF). Gastronomica: The Journal of Food and Culture. 8 (4): 24–33. Retrieved May 30, 2015. 
  5. ^ a b c Kahn, Howie (May 10, 2013). "Food Matters | When Eating and Art Became One". New York Times. Retrieved May 29, 2015. 
  6. ^ a b c d e Goldstein, Bethsheba (June 30, 2012). "Guest Post Series: Bethsheba Goldstein Interviews Carol Goodden about the Origins of FOOD". The SoHo Memory Project. Retrieved May 29, 2015. 
  7. ^ Goodman, Matthew Shen (May 9, 2013). "Giving FOOD its due: "FOOD 1971/2013"". ArtSlant. Retrieved May 29, 2015. 
  8. ^ Battaglia, Andy (May 2, 2013). "The Original Artisanal Food". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved June 1, 2015. 
  9. ^ Schaafsma, Ben (November 2008). "Other Options: A Closer Look at FOOD". Journal of Aesthetics and Protest (6). Retrieved June 3, 2015. 
  10. ^ a b Swanson, Carl (May 5, 2013). "Why Food (the Restaurant) Is the Talk of the 2013 Frieze Art Fair". Vulture. New York Media, LLC. Retrieved May 29, 2015. 
  11. ^ a b c d Kennedy, Randy (February 1, 2007). "When Meals Played the Muse". The New York Times. Retrieved June 3, 2015. 
  12. ^ a b Bußmann, Klaus; Muller, Markus, eds. (1999). FOOD, an Exhibition by White Columns (PDF) (in English and German). Koln, Germany: Walter Konig. ISBN 3887891333. Retrieved June 3, 2015. 
  13. ^ "Food Curated by Catherine Morris". Gallery 400. Retrieved June 1, 2015. 
  14. ^ a b c Scavone, Enzo (December 12, 2013). "When Artists Lived In SoHo: A Look Back at the Restaurant FOOD by Gordon Matta-Clark and Carol Goodden". Untapped Cities. Retrieved May 30, 2015. 
  15. ^ "Gordon Matta-Clark – Food (1972)". UbuWeb Film & Video. Retrieved June 3, 2015. 
  16. ^ a b Smyth, Ned (June 4, 2004). "Gordon Matta-Clark". Artnet. Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  17. ^ a b c d Corbett, Rachel (May 7, 2013). "7 of History's Most Mouth-Watering Artist-Run Restaurants". Artspace. Retrieved May 29, 2015. 
  18. ^ Swanson, Carl (May 5, 2013). "Why Food (the Restaurant) Is the Talk of the 2013 Frieze Art Fair". Vulture. New York Media, LLC. Retrieved May 29, 2015. 
  19. ^ Scavone, Enzo (December 12, 2013). "When Artists Lived In SoHo: A Look Back at the Restaurant FOOD by Gordon Matta-Clark and Carol Goodden". Untapped Cities. Retrieved May 30, 2015. 
  20. ^ Justin (October 29, 2009). "Carol Goodden & Gordon Matta-Clark's Food". Broken City Lab. Retrieved May 29, 2015. 
  21. ^ "Frieze Frame: FOOD 1971". The SoHo Memory Project. April 27, 2013. Retrieved May 29, 2015. 
  22. ^ a b Barliant, Claire (July 25, 2012). "112 Greene Street". The Paris Review. Retrieved June 1, 2015. 
  23. ^ "Remembering Gordon Matta-Clark: "Food" and How the Cutting Pieces Began". M-Kos. May 7, 2013. Retrieved May 30, 2015. 
  24. ^ a b Hoare, Natasha. "Matta Clark's FOOD". The Gourmand. Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  25. ^ a b Battaglia, Andy (May 2, 2013). "The Original Artisanal Food". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved June 1, 2015. 
  26. ^ a b "Gordon Matta-Clark's Art Restaurant Resurrected". Phaidon. May 2, 2013. Retrieved June 4, 2015. 

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