I couldn’t have asked for a better way to start off 2019 than with a debut exhibit at Miller Gallery. The show was easily the highlight of my artistic career thus far. It was a pleasure collaborating with fellow Charleston artist, Julia Deckman and being allowed the opportunity to collaborate on a shared passion of ours - the food & beverage community of Charleston. I loved chatting with Lindsay of Effin B Radio about all that went into making the show. If you haven’t already I hope you’ll listen! We also were interviewed by Kayln Oyer from the Post & Courier. Here is a look at that interview as well as the published article!
INTERVIEW with Charleston Scene | Post & Courier
1. So, this is focusing on the food & bev/culinary scene? What’s your connection to it/what made you want to cover that subject matter specifically?
I love food. I am constantly thinking about what I am going to eat or cook next. The concept of farm-to-table is something that I believe in passionately. Living in Charleston has shown me that it is possible to source local food all year round. The restaurants in Charleston champion this idea with seasonal menus and sustainably sourced ingredients. My boyfriend has worked in the f&b industry for a decade . Not only has he introduced me to the amazing people that work in this industry but has shown me the hard work that goes into creating Charleston’s unique culinary scene.
2. What are your own “shared experiences in the kitchen and around the table”?
I feel my parents unconditional love most through the food they make. I think that shared meals are the most intimate yet universal way of connecting with one another and it is not to be taken for grantedMy favorite family memories are centered around shared meals. Growing up in my parents house, life revolved around 6pm family dinner. My Dad loves to cook and experiment with new recipes while my mom has her go-to ones.
I recently found a photo of me and my sister as little girls making meatballs from scratch, with the biggest smiles on our faces. I vividly remember my dad teaching me to make veal parmesan at 10 years old and being over the moon watching the egg, flour and bread crumbs build on up my fingers.
3. What would you describe as your style/artistic influences? (I’ve read Julia, you use pops of color and Nerney, you use shadows/textures, but I’m sure you both can expand!)
I have a background in design and illustration from SCAD. That has been the foundation for all my work and has given me a specific perspective. I am methodical with my work. Almost all of my work begins with a thumbnail sketch to better visualize the possibilities of my final artwork. I love the freedom that this process allows. I am constantly looking for new ways to frame my subjects much like a photographer would. All this offers a fresh perspective to the world of food paintings. I want to bridge the gap between still life fruit bowls and simplified food art. I paint food in a way that is realistic and whimsical at the same time. Overall I think it is important to shine the light on food that it deserves. The fact that it’s an subject we all understand and is essential to our livelihood is endlessly intriguing to me.
4. How long have you been an artist? Specifically an artist here in Charleston?
There is one photo that always comes to mind from childhood. I was maybe 4 years old, paint brush in hand intently painting a rock like nothing else in the world mattered. Being creative has always been part of me. I took every art class my high school offered and constantly doodled over all my assignments. When the time came, I couldn’t wrap my head around a liberal arts school for college. When I was accepted into SCAD and realized drawing would be my homework, it was a dream come true!
I earned my BFA in Illustration at the Savannah College of Art & Design in 2013. From there I worked as an assistant to a professional printmaker as well as a store artist for Whole Foods, combining my passions for the culinary and visual arts. I joined the Miller Gallery team in 2017 shortly after they opened their doors and have been painting in Charleston ever since.
5. I saw that some specific Charleston restaurants were featured in this gallery- what were some of those (I saw Goat. Sheep. Cow.) and why did you decide to feature them?
Goat. Sheep. Cow. has become the spot I bring everyone to that visits. I am from up north where I would often frequent the Italian sections of Boston and Providence. Because of that, I have a serious appreciation for authentic bakeries and delis. For me, Goat. Sheep. Cow. is a little slice of home.
I knew immediately I wanted Kwei Fei and Babas on Cannon to be featured. They are both fresh and breaking the mold for Charleston restaurants. From their diverse menu, to the overall vibe, both places are meant for sharing and trying new things. It’s refreshing, inspiring and SO fun. I’m always looking for a reason to jam out to Kwei Fei’s music while indulging in their spicy dishes. I love the European influence of Babas, the counter service, the portion sizes. It’s seriously snack heaven. What’s not to love?
6. What do you both do beyond art/this exhibit?
Beyond being an artist, I’m a chef in my own kitchen, a humble student to all I still want to learn. I am immensely curious and love to read. My favorite food related book as of late is Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat by Samin Nosrat. It has completely changed how I think about cooking! I also work at Miller Gallery as the Sales + Branding Manager. You can find my artwork at Miller Gallery , The Vendue Hotel and Art & Light in Greenville, SC.