tasc studio kitchen
from TASC Ablett & Brafield's reflections on 2 years of TASC Studio Kitchen, available:
Excerpt taken 26/02/18
Bergen Assembly and FoodSketz
Towards the end of August we are working solidly for Freethought summit, producing tonnes of jams, pesto, pickles! At the beginning of September the summit kicks off and we invite FoodSketz to TASC Studio Kitchen. To run a project for a week. Facon! For those of you unfamiliar with facon its fake bacon. FoodSketz was ambitious and extremely energetic, each day they had a new concept and they came with a suitcase full of materials to decorate the space with. Fake plants and green plastic table cloths. They made pink and green cocktails, using the deliciously fake apple/cherry sours. It was evident that they thoroughly think about every detail, the black board was written so precisely and much more creatively than TASC! They had a huge banner, that they hung from the ceiling. Facon was served with sketti, or you could have real bacon, this was on Sunday, the called is FS Diner.
Image from https://www.instagram.com/foodsketz/
Or maybe it was the other way around actually sketti with facon! Umbrellas rested in the drinks. One night they opened late and organised a pub! Sunday night came around and we had all be working so hard, we packed the car up with all the leftover food, my drum and we made our way to Halsnøy. We made our weekend on monday and tuesday. Alison and Cat made butter, we had tonnes of leftover cream. We went fishing, in terrible wind. The waves were crashing against the rocks and we still attemped to cast our rods out. We were all dressed in orange. We were adamant to catch our dinner, and through this pure determination we managed to catch the sea bed. I somehow think it was our last fishing hook, so we were debating who would be the one to jump in to the sea and rescue the hook. In the end, we managed we climbed onto a boat close by, and balanced ourselves over the edge, to gently pull at the fishing wire. Did we manage to rescue the fishing hook undamaged?
When the week of Bergen Assembly came we got a huge delivery of food, on the saturday and sunday we would be serving lunch for 200 people each day. I remember a lot of smoked fish and smelling of it a lot the following days. On the first day of preparation, smoked mackerel arrived and so did FoodSketz. We sat down together for a first meal. Stacy had met and worked with Cat and Alison the previous summer in Antwerp and they were beginning a similar project, using food and social situations within their art practice. They would be turning TASC Studio Kitchen into their own project for the week, coming with huge amounts of energy and ready to experiment, play and test.
They brought new eyes to questions we had been asking:
Hosting: to order food at the counter, to have self service, to have table serve, to pay before you eat or afterwards? These all affect the environment, atmosphere and how people interact with the space, with us and with eachother. We had moved from asking people to order at the counter and bringing food over to their table, to the self service method where people would tell us what they had eaten afterwards. When FoodSketz arrived they tried different methods, first following our self service style and then finding their own format, taking ownership of the project. In their project, the familiarity and welcome came through their position as hosts, separate from the guests, marked by the counter and the aprons they wore.
They came with five different concepts for each of the days they were open. The difference of time here plays a big part in how we approach projects. For us, having a year long project at HKS, took away some urgency, we had longer to test out ideas and could be more patient, but also slower and more complacent. In five days Foodsketz really showed what you can do when you approach a project at full steam, when a short time frame gives you the encouragement to try lots of things out without over analyzing every decision but learning through play, and testing through doing.