Workshop 24

FOOD & ARTS: A MARRIAGE IN THE PUBLIC MARKET

BostonAPP/Lab Notes from January 26, 2016

 

What kinds of installations, performances, and interactive engagement will work in the Boston Public Market/The KITCHEN?

 

What does, or could, a marriage between food and art look like?

 

Are there ways to incorporate into this new generation of activation other elements within the Trustees’ portfolio -- which now includes The KITCHEN -- of community gardens and open space?

 

Helping to frame up this brainstorming workshop were: John Vasconcellos, formerly Senior Regional Director, Boston and the Southeast, for The Trustees; Cheryl Cronin, CEO of The Boston Public Market; and Mackenzie Sehlke, Assistant Market Manager, Programming.

 

This will be the start of a long-term initiative, and we’ll be announcing next steps at the workshop itself.

 

Workshop participant responses/recommendations, by category:

1. Illumination

  • Outside: projections/light shows/lasers/lighted sculptures.

  • Signature art piece: cf. BSA Green Staircase.

  • Simple, but fun, signage.

     

2. Marketing/communications

  • Need to communicate experience to those who may be interested (both in- and out-of-town).

  • Consider building’s visibility.

  • Generate attention/curiosity via building mapping, projections, art.

  • Lighting: opportunity for contemporary projection on exterior.

     

3. Vendor engagement

  • Programming: vendors bring live music from their area/farm/town.

  • Local music/local food.

  • Screens in market with recipe ideas, based on specific ingredients from vendors.

  • Branded bags with spaces for vendor-specific info stickers.

     

4. Civic engagement

  • Outside “directional” interventions/art that lead people to the BPM/KITCHEN.

  • Live streaming video of kitchen activities, visible in the market and/or on the street.

  • Create a “community table,” instead of a buffet experience: people talk about their food experiences/share recipes/knowledge.

  • Field trips: from schools to market, AND from market to schools, via truck/bus.

  • Students study grocery/market layout, food production, entrepreneurship, design.

  • Traveling empty school bus w/pop-up kitchen.

  • Farm visits: sign up at Market.

  • Culinary competitions: different age groups.

  • Interview people: experience in the market; sound bites for media.

    • Develop a BPM/Kitchen app, to include storytelling (about vendors, farms).

  • Pop-up BPM/Kitchen-branded stall(s) to be placed in different communities.

  • Community Garden “State Fair” – e.g., which garden has the best tomato? Connect Market to:

    • Local gardens.

    • Economic diversity.

    • Cultural diversity.

       

5. Partnerships:

  • “Home-made food,” “home-made art.”

  • Bring artists/artisans into Kitchen to demonstrate

    • Metal fabrication.

    • Woodworking.

    • Letterpress printing.

  • Find out what surrounding groups/businesses/organizations do/need, and find a connection via the content of the Market/Kitchen.

  • Promote homesteading programming:

    • Canning, cheese-making, kombucha-making, candle-making, etc.

    • Give space over to craft market once/month or so, focused on food-farm-

      related items.

    • Work with region-wide waterfront fish businesses, including fishermen/women.

       

6. Food-as-art

  • Vegetable art.

  • Latte art.

  • Competitions for all ages to make food art.

     

7. Venue

  • Extend market and kitchen images/atmosphere/character into (throughout) other parts of the building.

  • Kitchen doesn’t look inviting from street; looks like private space: make it look exciting

  • Both BPM and Kitchen need to be or feel “messier.”

  • Make the street entrance the primary entrance.

  • Activate the public/private perimeter – i.e., the outside edges around the building.

    • Flowers, stands with produce, street performers, painted murals on sidewalks.

    • Add art in hallway + lighting +vendor programming: call it "Nourish."

      • Art installation in hallway, changeable, a la Dewey Square.

  • Overall, plan for/implement ongoing series of temporary installations throughout the two spaces.