Monday, June 17, 2019
Sun Valley Center for the Arts Takes Wraps Off the Kitchen
Julie Green’s “An Embarassment of Dishes” features cobalt blue pigment, 7-Up and simple syrup painted and kiln fired on a 1961 set of Noritake inherited from her grandmother. PHOTO: Mario Gallucci, courtesy of the artist and Upfor Gallery in Portland.
Friday, December 21, 2018


Find out what kitchen implements have special meaning for your friends and neighbors when the Sun Valley Center for the Arts unveils its new BIG IDEA project tonight.

The Center will open “At the Table: Kitchen as Home” today—Friday, Dec. 21—at its gallery at 5th and Washington streets in Ketchum.

The Center invited community members to help create a part of the visual arts exhibition by loaning  objects from their kitchens. The objects are displayed on shelves surrounded by artist Ferris Cook’s drawings of kitchen implements.

Joan Linder’s “Blue Sink,” was done in marker and ink on paper in 2012. COURTESY: Joan Linder

Each is accompanied by a recipe card telling the story behind the object.

“This BIG IDEA project is a chance for all of us  to consider the central role of the kitchen in shaping our memories of home, family and friends,” said Courtney Gilbert, curator of Visual Arts at the Center. “Often, these memories are triggered when we use certain plates, linens or kitchen implements. Maybe it’s a platter inherited from a relative, or a piece of china received as a wedding gift, a whisk purchased for the first apartment or a dishtowel bought as a souvenir.”

Gilbert noted that the kitchen  inspires memories of taste and smell and family gatherings. We often recreate our childhood memories as adults, cooking the recipes our parents used, buying the same brands of foods we remember as a child and serving food on dishes we inherited from grandparents.

We come together in the kitchen for conversation, doing homework, making art and entertaining friends. Kitchens also offer the security of repetition and the familiar—the pot of coffee prepared the same way every morning.

“We hope this BIG IDEA triggers talk about all that happens in the kitchen—the conversations that were and weren’t shared at the table…the objects used in daily eating rituals,” said Kristin Poole, artistic director at The Center.

The exhibition features six contemporary artists whose work examines the role of the kitchen, its contents or the act of preparing and enjoying food:

  • Abby Carterhas created portraits of the people she got to know while volunteering in a soup kitchen in Connecticut.
  • Illustrator Ferris Cook has drawn an espresso maker, toaster and spoons that will be paired with kitchen objects on loan from Wood River Valley residents.
  • Painter Benny Fountain has painted works that marry the interior of the kitchen he once owned in Portland, Ore., with views through a kitchen window of the northern Idaho landscapes of his childhood. The paintings underline the connection between kitchens and our memories of childhood and place.
  • Julie Green was commissioned by The Center to spend time in residence at The Center’s house in Hailey, creating work in response to the history of the house, which was the birthplace of Ezra Pound.
  • MK Guth has created sculptures that combine books, objects and written instructions for different kinds of events that involve the preparation of and sharing of food and drink.
  • Joan Linder made daily drawings of her kitchen sink “brimming with dishes, recently washed or practically untouched” following the birth of her first child. The images convey the passage of time in the kitchen where labor repeats itself in a daily cycle.

There will be hands-on activities for learners of all ages in The Center’s Maker Space.

And The Center will present a series of lectures, workshops, films and theater productions in conjunction with the exhibition:

FREE Gallery Walk  Dec. 28, 5–7 p.m. 

FREE Evening Exhibition Tour Jan. 3, 5:30 p.m.

Lecture: “Cooking Shouldn’t Kill” with Nancy Hughes and Taylor Rixon Jan. 3, 6:30 p.m.

FREE Artist Talk with MK Guth Jan. 9, 5:30 p.m.

Film: The Irish Pub Jan. 10, 4:30 and 7 p.m.

FREE Family Day: “Art, Drink, and Be Merry!”  Jan. 12, 3–5 p.m.

CREATIVE JUMP-IN: “Sketching Kitchen Memories” with Bob Dix Jan. 16, 5:30 – 8 p.m.

Winter Warm-up Veillée with Music from Bon Débarras Jan. 17, 7 p.m.

Film: Chef Flynn Jan. 24, 4:30 and 7 p.m.

FREE Evening Exhibition Tour with Artist Abby Carter and The Hunger Coalition Jan. 24, 5:30 p.m.

Teen Workshop: Cookie Art! with Virginia McConnell of Canuck Cookies  Jan. 26, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.

FREE Public Storytelling Event with Idaho Basecamp Jan. 31, 6 p.m.

Company of Fools Theatre: Dinner with Friends: Recipes for Storytelling Feb. 1, 7 p.m.

FREE Evening Exhibition Tour Feb. 7, 5:30 p.m.

FREE Gallery Walk Feb. 15, 5–7 p.m.

Lecture:Plates, Places, and Stories from My Family Kitchen” with Joanne Weir Feb. 23, 4 p.m.

The visual arts exhibition will be on view through March 1. Admission is free and the gallery is open 9 a.m. through 5 p.m. weekdays and between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. Saturdays in February.



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