(...) îmi taie pofta / (...) spoils my appetite
Installation with gilded plates and food
With the participation of: Iryna Chykaliuk, Mariia Kovalova, Elisabeta Belu, Elisabeta Grăvilă, Gheorghe Grăvilă, Isis Montagud Varillon, Ramona Ghiniță, Silvia Moldovan, Larisa Constantin, Ciprian Ioțu, Gina Larion, Melinda Erdei, Dragoș Dubină, Ni Putu Ayu Febriyanti (Montez), Mircea Volar, Nati Volar, Fateh Ajam Oghli, Robert Băjenaru, Ioan Bebeșelea, Harun Morrison
The plates are HORECA ceramic products made by Apulum, Alba Iulia, and gilded at Gruni, Timișoara. The furniture is on loan from OAR Timiș and FABER.
Location: Corneliu Miklosi Public Transport Museum
(...) îmi taie pofta / (...) spoils my appetite is an essentialisation and amplification of the voices of 21 people who live and work in Timișoara, through their responses to questions about what spoils their appetite and the food that provides them with the necessary comfort for conversation. The responses are visible in the text written by Kun on the plate (the person quoted is mentioned on the back). The snack prepared for the audience is a short version of a vegan menu, designed by chef Noemi Hügel to awaken memories and stimulate a conversation on political issues.
The installation, both the plate series and the menu, is based on a series of 21 remunerated interviews with people from Ukraine, Syria, Indonesia, Spain, England and Romania who are in Timișoara temporarily or permanently. Some of the questions used are: in your childhood, who did the cooking, what did they cook during the week, in times of precariousness or fasting, what was talked about at the table, what do you cook now to remember the past, what spoils your appetite, how would you complete the sentencen (...) îmi taie pofta / (...) spoils my appetite. The responses have been reproduced ad litteram in gold on 21 plates, in the interviewees’ chosen languages. The plates will be given to the interviewees at the end of the exhibition.
The vegan menu is a common denominator that harmonises fragments of each interviewee's culinary memory, of which the public can sample throughout the exhibition. The choices made in this project have countless implications: when and with whom we feel comfortable discussing what bothers us, who wants to discuss politics, what a memory of taste means, how local/universal dining habits are, how access to food has changed, what keeping a dialogue open entails, what are the effects of agricultural monocultures and individual households on food, how precariousness is felt in urban and rural environments, who does the invisible work in the household, kitchen and in the arts, but also what multiculturalism means in Timișoara now. Some are practical: how we chose people for the interviews, who produces the meals and ingredients, how we balance the comfort of the meal with the discomfort of the discussion, why did we have a vegan menu, what is the availability of ingredients, how we prepare food to be inclusive and nutritious, who the food recipes belong to.
This installation creates a comfortable situation that allows for discussions on political topics such as the above.
Noemi Hügel (b. 1985) is a cook. She cooks recipes that are sometimes invented and sometimes not, but always with the season in mind. The market is not far from her kitchen or her food. She's passionate about cakes and parsley (and alliteration). She graduated from the Faculty of Arts with an MA in creative writing, which helps her approach cooking both playfully and thoroughly, such as writing epic shopping lists. Since 2017, she's been cooking at Ambasada in Timișoara and enjoys feeding and surprising those around her.
Ana Kun, visual artist based in Timișoara, Romania, 1/3 of Balamuc and 1/4 of Zephyr.
Her practice includes, but is not limited to art shows and civic discussions, as she works alongside visual artists and curators, but also people involved in education, civic and environmental activism. Although professionally trained in Graphics and Creative Writing, method and technique are secondary in developing her interests. She makes a point of challenging and adapting herself to the needs of the project, where writing, drawing, publishing and others may concur to bring an issue into focus. It follows that collaborations are a great source of joy to both her practice, but also on a personal level. She is part of two artist groups, Balamuc (with Livia Coloji and Răzvan Cornici, since 2013) and Zephyr (with Apolonija Šušteršič, Livia Coloji and Victor Dragoș, since 2019), both working collaboratively with other artists and professionals.