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