Are these chairs making you hungry?

A new show at London’s Viaduct furniture showroom aims to examine the relationship between food and design by tasking three top chefs to devise a series of menus in response to 15 chair designs.

Carbon Chair
The Carbon Chair makes our chefs think of ‘burnt offerings’ and ‘spaghetti with squid ink’

The chefs – Sam Clark from Moro, Fergus Henderson from St John and Michael Belben from The Eagle – were each shown an image of the 15 chairs, without any other details, and asked to describe the food they associated with the designs.

While some reponses seem obvious (Marcel Wanders and Bertjan Pot’s Carbon Chair makes Clark think of ‘charcoal-grilled steak’, while all three chefs said Hanse Wegner’s Wishbone Chair makes them think of chicken) some are more esoteric.

Standard Chair
Jean Prouvé’s Standard Chair brings to mind ‘sausages eaten with marmalade’ and scallops with pea puree and mint’

Clark says Jean Prouvé’s Standard Chair, which remind him of his old school chairs, make him want to cook ‘sausages eaten with marmalade or pork à la orange’ and the same chair makes Belben think of ‘scallops with pea puree and mint’. Henderson says, ‘The very practical nature of Jean Prouvé chairs brings Oor Wullie to mind, sitting on his bucket eating mince and tatties.’

The show is being curated by Viaduct founder James Mair, who says the show aims to draw a correlation between food and design – from how restaurants can regenerate neighbourhoods to how to select seats for eating at home or in restaurants.

Wishbone Chair
The Wishbone Chair makes all the chefs think of chicken – chicken broth, chicken with bread sauce and chicken in a basket

Show 4: Food For Thought is at Viaduct, 1-10 Summer Street, London EC1R, from 23 March-13 April.

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