Introduction these artists have created, such examples, will


As an up and coming artist, I have
always been interested in the sociability and food in the art world. This has
stemmed from a love of cooking from a young age and how food has always brought
people together whether it be cooking a meal or just some baked desserts. During
the 1990s bringing people together to eat soon started to be considered an art
form and because of this more artists realised that they could use food as an
artistic medium. It became known as relational aesthetics. The purpose of
relational aesthetics is to break the traditional aspects of art by taking it
out of the gallery space and creating a social experiment in its place. The art
that is created with Relational Aesthetics in mind is focused on life, social
exchanged and audience’s involvement. Nicolas Bourriaud defined it as “a set of artistic practices which take as
their theoretical and practical point of departure the whole of human relations
and their social context, rather than an independent and private spaces.” (Bourriaud, 1998, pg. 113). Relational
Aesthetics can be classed as unorthodox in the art world but so was the Avant
Garde movement, at its time the Avant grades were coming up with more creative
and innovating ways to make art, relational aesthetics seems to reinvent the
Avant Garde and steps a little more out of the boundaries that the art society
is usually comfortable with by making those who normally go to galleries the
art itself, more of a performance and a way to make people see and experience
art in a new way. There is also a culinary subcategory that has started gaining
popularity. The artist would instead prepare and serve food, making the meal
the artistic medium and the social experience would be the conversations had
with other spectators. However not everyone sees that a conversation had
standing in front of let’s say a painting can be classed as a social
experience, some artists believed that there needed to more of a human
connection and I will be looking a specific works that some of these artists
have created, such examples, will include the Do it! Project which looks in how
art can be more of a social concept, Felix Gonzales Torres (untitled) Portrait
of Ross Laycock, which was compiled of a pile of sweets with which viewers
could take. Jeremy Deller’s recreation of Valerie’s café from Bury market,
Rirkrit Tiravanija and his Thai curry exhibition where people sit and talk
while eating and finally, I shall be looking at the Grizedale arts, colosseum
of the consumed. 

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Considering that these artists have
also either done sociability or food related projects or combining both food
and sociability together has made my dream of wanting to open a bakery come
more into focus. This bakery would be very creative in the way that it is
designed and if it became popular I would make sure that each store would have
a different theme and I would like it to be a place people would be able to
have conversations with either people that they know or even strangers, also
being that local artists can place their works as either an exhibition or as a
place to be displayed until sold. This was inspired by Rirkrit Tiravanija with
his exhibition of Thai curry where the people who came to the exhibition were
the piece of art work.




Do it! Project

The Do it! Project, was created by
Hans Ulrich Obrist. During 1993 Obrist and fellow artists, Christian Boltanski
and Bertrand Lavier where visiting Paris, in a discussion they all shared
similar concerns with how the exhibitions could be made to be more flexible and
open-ended ( This conversation
soon led to the question of could a show take ‘scores’ or written instructions
by an artist and then enacted by anyone who would want to take on these
guidelines of a piece of work. Getting in touch with 12 different artists,
Obrist asked them to send him a list of instructions for a piece of artwork
that someone else could make, putting all of these Instructions Obrist had
gathered into a book, translating the book into 9 different languages and then
publishing the book in countries that the languages originated from. Thus, was
the beginning of the Do it! Project. However, the idea of the Do it! Project
can be linked back to the Fluxus movement, as they both have some similar ideas
of how to socialise art.

During 1960, George Maciunas had
founded the Fluxus movement which would become one of many influences on the
art world into making sociability a form of art. Even though the Fluxus
movement is still known today it was also rather short-lived “is Fluxus an art movement? Is Fluxus beyond
all categorisation” ( Fluxus got its inspiration
from other movements such as DaDa, Avant Garde and the composer John cage. The
Fluxus movement contained all different forms of making art however one of the
main ideals and how the movement first started would be performance. What some
would consider games, in fact were really instructions given out by artists to
then be recreated by another person, each time someone takes on one of the projects
it be will unique every time due to only having yourself to guide you through
the process.

“Fluxus should become a way of life not a profession”; “Fluxus people
must obtain their ‘art’ experience from everyday experiences, eating, working,
etc.” Maciunas wanted the
Fluxus movement to be a way of life and not just art. Art should be experienced
in everything that a person does, ideas should be sparked or inspired by life
in general and not just to be viewed in a typical gallery situation where the visitors
walk around, discuss the art work and only really experiencing the art with
only one out of six senses. Art should be fun and free, people should be able
to view art and experience it in every way possible. Maciunas stated that there
was too much high art and that was the reason they started doing Fluxus
(Maciunas, 1978).

The commonality that links the Fluxus
movement and Obrist’s Do it! Project together is that they both want the
artists to involve the viewer into the art piece itself. As a curator Hans
Ulrich Obrist was always concerned with how spectators viewed a piece of art. It
is Obrist’s job to place artworks together that work well and complement each
other, this as Bruce Altshuler called it “the
rise of curator as creator” (Obrist, 1994, pg. 8) making it so Obrist even
as a curator is technically a creator of sociability, as to be a curator you
must create to please the viewers. However, this was still Obrist guiding the
viewers through the works of art and he was troubled with how it didn’t give
the viewer a complete experience of the works. “How can one be fully with art? In other words, can art be experienced
directly in a society that has produced so much discourse and built so many
structures to guide the spectator?” (Obrist, 2017, pg.4.) To realise how
Obrist has done this I decided to take on some of the Do it! Project instructions
and photographing the outcomes and discussing what it was like to do complete
these tasks that other artists around the world have given.  Choosing only a couple to complete, each being
totally different to the other, hoping to be able to get a full experience of
what the Do it! Project is like.


“RAQS Media Collective

The Robin Hood of Wisdom (2012)


Go to your nearest public library

What does the knowledge taste like?

The unsalted white of an egg.

It asks for the garnish of betrayal.

PREPARE yourself.

Before setting off. Select a passage from a
book that is dear to you.

Write or paint it. With elegance, flair and
affection on a quality piece of paper.

The question remains: 

How to share that fullness of hunger that
foreboding and foresight.

Select a book at random, from the library

(Make sure that it is about something
completely unrelated to the contents of the passage you have selected)

You may choose to write or print a passage
from a story in the Arabian Nights

(Madrus and Mathers)

and the book in your hand could be A Treatise
on Heat

(Saha and Srivastava). Or vise versa.


INSERT the paper

bearing your passage, between the pages of this

REPLACE the book in its place on the shelf,

REPEAT the procedure as often as possible

INFECT knowledge with wisdom”


Books are something that I love and
can create a whole new world inside of your mind so being able to share one of
my favourite quotes by writing it down on a piece of paper and placing it
inside random books in a library. For my quote I chose “There is only one god, and his name is Death. And there is only one
thin we say to death: ‘not today'” (RR Martin) I chose this quote as death
is something that everyone worries about even though it is inevitable in the
end. This set of instructions is one that I think I’m going to carry on with by
selecting a quote that resonates with me and share it with others, by placing
the quote inside a book it is a quick and simple way to spread the words that
you choose and maybe if someone else picks out one of the books I placed a
quote it and it maybe helps spread a bit of joy or helps someone in any other
way. This became my favourite Do it! that I have come across so far as its like
spreading a part of yourself to other people.


“Sehgal, Tino

You are already doing all of it (2002)


You are already doing all of it” (


I chose this one due to the fact it
makes you think. First, it doesn’t feel like having anything to do, due to it saying,
“you are already doing all of it” (Sehgal,
2002) I started questioning my actions throughout the day, wondering
whether it was having my day already planned out but that wouldn’t already be
doing it. Thinking on it a little more, I took to interpret it as if you are
living, doing all your everyday chores and routines is already doing it. Maybe
it was all the things I was doing in the day that was the piece of art.
Involving a few other people and giving them the instructions. After discussing
it for a while we all came to the same conclusion in the end, for this
particular task it would be down to each individual person’s own
interpretations, while for myself it was as if to make my everyday life,
everything that is going to be done in that particular day will become piece of
art by living. However, others may feel as if say just waking up in the
morning, or let’s say going shopping or having a meal, that that is them doing
it already and that the task is complete but what if it never is, due to the
openness of the of the wording this could be a piece of work someone would
possibly work on for days, weeks or even years if they wished too, for myself I
took a round 3 days to come to my conclusion. Anyway, either way whatever you
are doing, you’re already doing it.

“REYES, Pedro

Compatibility test for couple (2001)



1 table

1 blender

Large, milkshake glasses

Cutting board

Large basket with as many kinds of fruit or
vegetables as possible



Select the fruit or vegetable that you
identify with the most

Select the fruit or vegetable that is more
similar to your partner

Mix a shake with it, and judge by its flavour
the compatibility with your partner.” (

The final Do it! Instruction that I
took on was by Pedro Reyes, I thought it would be quite amusing one to do,
seeing as its testing your compatibility out with someone who is close to you
in either a romantic or platonic way, however I decided to do it with a close
friend, so I chose a friend from college. Picking a fruit or vegetable that I
could try and identify as was quite tricky, it’s like trying to imagine yourself
as a fruit or vegetable and how certain aspects of your personality can be
passed over. Choosing a fruit or vegetable that I identify most with was different
it was trying to figure out what I would be if I was a fruit, in the end I went
with mango, for my friend I chose lime. After blending the fruit and both of us
trying it, the outcome was refreshingly sweet. After trying the mango and lime
smoothie concoction we realise that even though they are fruits that both of
don’t really like it was a nice mix together, meaning that our friendship to us
anyway is quite compatible. Getting a few other people to try the smoothie,
there was a lot of mixed reviews on it, not everyone thought the fruits mixed
well together, maybe that has a deeper connection to other people’s thoughts on
our friendship.

After completing a few of the Do it!
Project challenges it made me realise that there is a lot of thought that goes
into these instructions and some of them if anyone is going to take them on
they need to be able to set aside a lot of time to be able to create them. Even
just going through the Do it! Compendium took up a lot of time and being able
to choose just a couple of the instructions was difficult due to there being so
many to pick from, however it can be difficult to create something that wasn’t
your idea, having to interpret the something  that isn’t your own can be difficult to do, there’s
a lot to consider when doing some of them, like materials, skill and , however
this is taking the art out of the gallery space, out of the artist hand and
turning the viewer into the artist instead. This is what makes it such a
monumental project and something that will be able to be continued and
interpreted in many ways. Just like joseph Beuys stated everyone is an artist (,
it doesn’t matter if you come from an artistic background everyone can make art
and that is one of the main aspect of the Do it! Project, showing that everyone
in their own way is an artist.











Artist who work
with food


For Relational Aesthetics Rirkrit
Tiravanija became one of the most influential contemporary artists. Tiravanija’s
unique way to get the audience more involved in the art that they were viewing,
he would insist that the viewer must be physically present in a certain
situation and at a specific time, eating food that Tiravanija has cooked
himself while mingling alongside other visitors in a communal area. (Bishop,

Tiravanija’s most famous piece of work
is 1992 Untitled (free) it was a very successful and important piece of work
that was described by Laura Hoptman as a ‘social sculpture’. Tiravanija’s work
was influenced by the social sculpture by Joseph Beuys and the Fluxus movement.
It was first exhibited in the 303 Gallery space in New York, Tiravanija decided
he would clear out and use a back office as a kitchen to be able to prepare and
serve rice and vegetarian green Thai curry. For an artist to do something like
this was extreme for the time, as galleries were used to still holding more
formal exhibitions of being guided round a space to see either paintings,
sculptures or even performances and the gallery goers chatting about the works
to each other. When Tiravanija came in with his Thai curry, visitors wouldn’t
expect to be turned into the art piece itself, due to the fact that artwork is
usually meant to be looked at and appreciated from a further away.

This exhibition gave off a
distinctively different experience from most held at the gallery, the closer
you get to the exhibition space the more you start to smell the Thai curry,
being an unusual scent to have floating around a gallery it would make you
exceptionally more curious the closer you get until finally finding the
exhibition. Having such a delicious smell in a gallery can make things feel
more comforting, as when people smell home cooked meals it brings a sense of
happiness to people making them not care who they are talking or what even the
conversation is about, its having good food and good company that makes it a
more enjoyable experience.

This innovating piece of work has been
recreated at multiple galleries since it first exhibited at the 303 Gallery,
the MoMA was one of the galleries that Untitled (free) had been exhibited as
part of the installation Contemporary Galleries: 1980 – Now. The back-office
kitchen was recreated to full scale of the original version, Tiravanija himself
decided to work with MoMA to help recreate the social experience as Tiravanija
has always known that “a gallery is a social frame” (,
2011) and that it needs to be treated more like one. Instead of having to be
careful not to touch something, Tiravanija spoke about a piece of work by Carl
Andre, saying “I often bring up
the idea that people sometimes walk on a floor sculpture by Carl Andre only to
find out midway (or all the way) through that they have been walking on a
sculpture. Suddenly people are afraid that they did something they were not
supposed to do (allowed to do).”  (,
2012) Tiravanija didn’t want anyone to feel afraid or that they have too many
limitations when it came to his work, Untitled (free) could be classed as a
breakthrough for Tiravanija, wanting visitors to be able to experience the
piece of art to its fullest and what better way than to turn the gallery
visitors into the art instead. By offering food to the viewers Tiravanija was
attempting to produce a space for the gallery visitors to interact and socialise
with each other, whether they knew each other or not. However, it wasn’t just
getting viewers to interact with each other and talk about things that they see
such as pots, left over ingredients, placing of the chairs and tables etc. but
Tiravanija would also swap places with the visitors so they would be cooking
instead of him was to create confusion as to who the artist was and who the
audience is, blurring the lines that separate artist and viewer. It was
encountering art through pleasure and conversation.



In 1991 Gonzales-Torres created
Untitled (Portrait of Ross in L.A.) being a memorial to his partner Ross
Laycock who died of AIDs in 1991.  The
piece was made up of 175 pounds of hard boiled candies that were wrapped in
brightly multi-coloured cellophane wrappers. The viewer can take pieces of the
candy to either eat or give to someone else. Just like Rirkrit Tiravanija, this
works is unusual in a gallery setting as any form of food is not widely
accepted in galleries but it had less of a surprise on gallery visitors that
Tiravanija’s untitled (free) due to it looking more like a sculptural piece of

Felix Gonzales-Torres liked to explore
the fragile line that separates our public and private lives from each other and
giving some of his works a political point of view to it. In the early 1990’s,
Felix Gonzales-Torres started exhibiting a series of works that were all made
up of hard candies. What draws the viewers’ attention towards these pieces is
the brightly coloured cellophane wrappers that the candies are wrapped in. Each
work has a different set of colours helping to get the point across with the
type of cause Gonzales-Torres was tackling at the time, such as loss, love,
sexuality and sickness are some of the themes Gonzalez-Torres had incorporated
into his works. Gonzales-Torres wanted people to interact with the work, to
help establish the real reason behind the work instead of only seeing hard
boiled candies in brightly coloured wrappers. “creative expression transforms the
spectator from an inert receiver to an active, reflective observer and
motivates social action.” ( linking this piece to his lover and
trying to support the AIDS epidemic, wanting people to realise it wasn’t just

In a way it is quite a beautiful
sorrowful way to use food in a social context, starting the pile off at
Laycock’s healthiest weight before his health soon started to decline until his
ultimate death. By letting the gallery visitors to take sweets from the pile
until it needs replenishing again, by doing this Gonzales-Torres is in a way
giving eternal life to Ross Laycock with this piece. When those who take some
of the candies from the pile it is also like they are taking apart of Laycock
with them and having the candies in brightly coloured wrappers catches the eye
of the gallery visitors and draws them towards the piece, the coloured wrappers
could also signify Felix Gonzales-Torres sexuality when looked at now due to
the LGBT community adopting the colours of the rainbow and giving each colour
of that rainbow a different meaning all of them adding up to create and show
peace. However, a lot of gallery goes can unfortunately look past the true
meaning of Gonzales-Torres work and only taking the candy without having any
after thought of what it could truly mean not unless you read the statement
before going over to the candy, this is disappointing as Gonzales-Torres has a
lot of strong connections and themes that run throughout most of his projects,
that help link to issues most people tend to have to deal with on a daily




Grizedale arts:
coliseum of the consumed  

Grizedale arts institution is all
about the development of contemporary art and how we can move it away from the
parameters that had been set up around art over the past couple hundred years
and take it in a new direction for artists to be able to experiment more and get
more involved with cultures, society, politics and getting the local community
involved with the arts centre as art is constantly evolving and we must evolve
to keep with the new ad inventive ways to now create. It’s an institution that
encompasses many different themes, ways of making and just general
experimentation and development of art. “art needs to work on a daily
habitual basis for everybody in an ordinary way as part of ordinary everyday
life” those at Grizedale want to bring art back to being used as
a tool in everyday life and make it less for the elite who go to galleries or
buy expensive works of art because they can do, because they have the money to
do so but Grizedale wants to help reinvent that aspect of art and make it
accessible and useful.

However, I shall be focusing on the
coliseum of the consumed, which was created by the Yanjiang group, which was a
prototype for a cricket pavilion and hosted the coliseum of the consumed, it
was a project that everyone was able to get involved with, around the boundary
of the building they had stalls set up by artists, community groups,
eccentrics, all of who were selling home baked products, ideas to do with
alternative eating, a produce market and they would also have leaflets to give
out with information on performances and presentations given by artists, chefs,
food historians and other such specialists ( All the money
that they earned from the coliseum of the consumed was used to help build a new
cricket pavilion that the village needed and it was Yangjiang groups
contribution to the growth of the village and helping to form more of a closer
connection to the local community.