"Chef Plates :The Philadelphia Collection"

Mike Geno Art at the James Beard House Gallery
Exhibition: March & April 2014

Artist Statement & Information

[ chef plates menu ]

This series of paintings was inspired by an opportunity offered to me to exhibit at the James Beard Foundation. The foundation is a non-profit organization that promotes the culinary arts. The James Beard Foundation Awards are considered the "Oscars of the food world" and The Greenhouse Gallery is located inside the James Beard Foundation House. It's an honor for any chef to be invited to cook at the JBH House where large groups enjoy the culinary art of a different chef, six nights a week. The Greenhouse Gallery exhibits only the works of artists working with culinary themes.

When contacted by the events coordinator and curator, Izabela Wojcik, I was struck by how generously she spoke of the many recent successful events with Philadelphia Chefs. She unknowingly inspired me to consider a series of paintings that would offer a unique opportunity to have various dishes by Philadelphia Chefs memorialized on the walls of this culinary house of honor.

I was attracted to the opportunity to have my painting further explore the role of homage, to another artisan. Working on an ongoing series of "cheese portraits" and another of sushi paintings, I realized that each cheese and sushi roll is a work of art that I translated into paint. I enjoyed connecting the work to the source and history of the maker of my subject. This series of "Chef Plates" is a collection of chef compositions. Many traveled to my studio to plate them, enabling me to work directly from life and capture their aesthetics and passion. So, this series crossed over into new territory for me; one of collaboration.

I enjoyed the complex compositional challenges each chef offered because I've thoroughly enjoyed their food and I want to thank each of them for their generosity and support.

JBH logo Mike Geno Exhibit

Artwork exhibited in this series is available for sale. Purchases can be made directly from each painting's page, however the work will not be available until after the exhibit ends.

These paintings are each oil on wood panel surfaces that come off the wall aproximately 1.5 to 2"
(commissions and sales available)

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