Ponder Food As Love (the new working title)
We have stood at the kitchen sink and performed the delicate and demanding task of nourishing our families for the last 20 years. Every day that we have engaged in these rituals, we felt the intense immersion, the consuming compulsion and the exquisite pleasures of offering nourishment. Our flesh is a terrain of give-and-take, where emotional and physical necessities meet. The line between serving and self dissolve as duties of mother, housekeeper, homemaker have transformed us into platter, altar, banquet and booty.
We offer you this intimate fare; our exploration of the convoluted act of nurture where need, ritual, offering, celebration, promise and debt all share the table.
In developing this body of work, Ciurej and Lochman were inspired by the words of John Ruskin, who recognized the mythic dimensions of their chores:
Cookery means the knowledge of Medea and of Circe and of Helen and of the Queen of Sheba. It means the knowledge of all herbs and fruits and balms and spices, and all this is healing and sweet in the fields and groves and savory in meats. It means carefulness and inventiveness and willingness and readiness of appliances. It means the economy of your grandmothers and the science of the modern chemist; it means testing and no wasting; it means English thoroughness and French and Arabian hospitality; and, in fine, it means that you are to be perfectly and always ladies -- loaf givers.
Barbara Ciurej and Lindsay Lochman have been collaborating on photographic projects for the past 30 years. In their work, they reconfigure the familiar in order to express the timelessness, magical and mythical that they feel in their bones.