Feasting on the Art of Party Food

Feast for the Eyes: Art Inspired by Food and Dining
Nassau County Museum of Art
Through November 6, 2016

By Franklin Hill Perrell, Artful Circle

Let’s talk about the three essential food groups: pizza, spaghetti, and hot dogs.

When people get together for a party, caution is often thrown to the wind, and whether in a city loft (Janet Fish), outdoor picnic (Philip Pearlstein), fun food and lots of animated chat is essential. And naturally, the subject makes for great narrative art.

Susan Cushing’s United Nations presents elegant diners at an endless table ascending to the horizon amidst an ale of trees: getting together to eat, always adds to the fun. Inspired by post-modernism and folk art, Susan Cushing’s highly stylized narrative captures the playful palette and casual elegance of a multi-national outdoor banquet surrounded by greenery.

In this painting, the viewer is cordially invited to the party—a charmed life filled with seasonal colors and dresses in a fairytale landscape. Cushing uses pattern, color and flat silhouettes to portray this summer feast in a setting not unlike one she might experience herself on the east end of Long Island.

Not quite a party, Gillian Laub’s Octomom photograph portrays the interactions of an unavoidable type of party, at least for those involved, plus a bit of reality television.

dsc_0026Also particularly enticing is Peter Anton’s Pizza and Sushi, with their bold geometric shapes and succulent color—devoid of healthful overtones—sustains all of that menu item’s appeal. “Food brings people together and there is no better way to celebrate life,” states artist Peter Anton. Connecticut born Anton’s artistic style employs humor, scale, irony, and intensity to make ordinary foods aesthetically pleasing and seductive in atypical ways. His monumental-sized hyperrealist sculptures are crafted from a variety of materials, including resin, wood, clay, paints and metal. The intensified colors, delicious detailing and over-the-top proportions immediately surprise and delight.

 

Art featured in above photograph (left to right):
Susan Cushing, United Nations, oil on canvas, 2016
Peter Anton, Sushi, mixed media

 

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