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Introduction

Kettle Toosils Linew Copy2 Copy

Fabrizio Cocchiarella,Toosils, 2014.
Image courtesy of the artist and Alice Kettle.

The first online edition of Feast takes the theme of cutlery, creatively exploring utensils of eating, from the everyday use of knives, forks and spoons for eating to their adaptation as accessories for drug taking, musical instruments, symbolic talisman and narrative objects.

The spoon (as a tool for eating) takes on a new role in the work of Rachael Colley where, rather than aiding ingestion, the re-formed utensil is used for regurgitation. Here, the purging of a recently consumed meal serves as a means to make room for a continued spooning of food into the mouth. For Franziska Lantz cutlery is a means for creating sound, tapping, hitting and rhythmically mixing the audio echo of metal utensils. Lucy Johnston discusses the work of designer Kate Farley, exploring the fork as a means for mark making and drawing in the designer’s recent commission for Formica and Alex Michon reveals the spoon to be central to rituals of drug taking.

Extending beyond cutlery as a tool, associations of cutlery as marker of social etiquette are explored in J.C Bernthal’s article on the literature of Roald Dhal, presenting cutlery as an uncanny literary device. A discussion of the knife in the Dada collages of Hannah Hoch by Kay Tabernacle further serves as a means to reveal the social and cultural resonnance of food in the third Reich. A discussion of social status is found in Mariana Meneses article on the history of the Taco; a dish incorporating cutlery in its absence with the design of the tortilla wrap serving as both plate and tool for eating. Meneses draws upon the history of the taco as a marker of class divisions in Mexico whereas Cathy Lomax’s text on John Huston’s 1967 film Reflections in a Golden Eye explores the symbolic associations of a ‘silver spoon’ the western marker of a privileged social class, the status of silver cutlery is further explored in a new film work by Daniel Fogarty. Creatively reviewing cutlery designs by exclusive makers Georg Jensen and David Mellor, Fogarty explores questions of value, presentation and use.

Combining academic articles, creative writing, recipes and short pieces of evocative text the edition presents a rich and layered mix of content that serves to expand and question our familiarity of the simple knife, fork and spoon and its uses. As tools for eating, regurgitating, drumming and drawing the familiar utensils are re-presented throughout the edition to evoke wider associations and possibilities of their role in our day-to-day lives, pointing towards cutlery as a subject for literary narratives, arts practice, social commentary and cultural analysis.

The edition includes an additional section of reviews on food related museum collections, dining events and tableware