Welcome to MissouriBendStudio!

This is an online journal of my artistic investigations and a way to communicate about my work, ideas, quandries and queries! I welcome comments and conversation and do hope you enjoy these musings. My artwork is available in my shop MissouriBendStudio on Etsy.com or on my website.


Monday, February 10, 2014

Food and Food for Thought

There is nothing like a newfound interest and passion in the middle of the cold, winter days to warm the heart and make you look forward to the day. A few weeks ago, my husband and I wandered into a delightful new-to-us bookstore in Rapid City, on the other side of South Dakota....the side with mountains! I came away with a book that I savored to its last page and one that sparked and cemented my new interest in reading about food....that book was The Table Comes First by Adam Gopnik.

My husband and I enjoy fine food and a fabulous meal, and that pursuit along with experiencing wonderful art, are the top two pleasures we seek on any trip we take. I love it when you meet a book by chance and it shifts your focus and your life in new ways...this book solidified my yearning to know more about the history of food, of the changing tastes over time, and in the culture of eating and the metaphor of "the table" as a symbol of our shared humanity. Even if it is not a literal table, the hunger for food and the notion of "the meal" is something we all experience. The book was a true delight...I closed the book on the last page a few days ago, satisfied and hungry at the same time.

I swiftly ordered two more books that just arrived in the mail today and I am torn as to which one to delve into first!

I haven't read any M. F. K. Fisher and if one is interested in gastronomy, as I now am, she is a must....the hefty volume is a compilation of all her essentials books in one. Now, that should be a feast!

This book, Provence, 1970, which has gotten wonderful reviews, caught my eye and I couldn't not buy it. A moment in time in the South of France when M.F.K. Fisher, Julia Child, James Beard and three other notables in the world of food, found themselves together sharing meals, stories and ideas. This appears to be another book to savor. 

I am finding that reading is just such pure pleasure....and in fact, provides food and nourishment of another kind. All my reading informs the work that I make and I find myself torn between reading and making. While I am still in the studio each day, making the daily drawings, a found text poem and pursuing other work, I think longingly of the books upstairs waiting to be read...a glass of wine at my side.  I have a sense that this new subject of inquiry will shift the work in the studio, but I have no idea what form it will take....kind of exciting!

In the meantime, here is a new piece to share. This appears to be very much a part of the Notes From The Ancestors series, but rather than having it framed, I am mounting it on an 8x8" cradled board so that it is ready to hang. Somehow, I'm not sure whether it wants to be a continuation of that series or the start of something new....I still don't even know its title. It is most unusual for me to introduce a newly finished work and not be able to tell you its name. There is a spoon and a tiny table down in the corner....is this the start of something new or just a bridge between the past and the future? I guess I'll know soon.

Hope you are having a good start to your week! Any reading recommendations you'd like to share? See you soon!


  1. Have you read Comfort Me with Apples by Ruth Reichl? I love that book. It's a good memoir. I love reading about food too. I agree that everything feeds into our work.

    1. Hi Bridgette....no, haven't read that book, but will look it up, for sure! Hope you are faring well through this long winter! Cheers...

  2. Lovely work. I think a spoon full of beads might be better than a spoon full of sugar, even...


I'm happy to hear from you...comments and questions are welcome!