Dana Sherwood: Art and the Ecosystem

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


dsc_0053In 2015, artist and former baker, Dana Sherwood hosted her own unique brand of dinner party. Her mission was not to throw the typical catered affair, but to show the impact of food on both man and wild animal, and to illustrate the concept of “Anthropocene,” a controversial term that challenges the destructive role humans play in the destabilization of nature.

Using non-traditional materials, she created this sculptural installation featuring a food cart, complete with cooking utensils, baskets, pots and pans, cookbooks and actual food such as raw meat, sausages, liver, fish and more. With all those objects in place, the cart was positioned on site in the Brazilian wilderness to engage local wildlife. Since the food was presented in specific ways humans would understand—such as shellfish artfully arranged platter, creatively stacked delicacies or a plucked chicken ready for the oven—a video camera was hidden to document the reactions and behaviors of such creatures as ocelots, birds, insects and more, as they encountered the unexpected banquet.

After the completion of the study in early 2016, Sherwood replicated the food in resin, and added a monitor with edited video footage onto the same wooden painted cart. She invites viewers to watch the animals figure out how to serve themselves from the cart, demonstrating how human presence interferes with animal populations and the ecosystem.

Sherwood lives in New York with her husband, fellow conceptual artist, Mark Dion.




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