Arts,  Entertainment,  Food

TEDx Hackney – FEED ‘The Poetics of Food’

There is a profound synergy between science, engineering, art, design, business and food. Not conventionally a list you would see together yet we are beginning to understand the necessary cocktail of disciplines that are required to change the way we view, produce, consume and connect with food.

The best way to connect theses disciplines is to unite us with our infatuation with food, and that is exactly what F.E.E.D (Food, Education, Experience, Design) did at TEDx Hackney with their incredible immersive experience ‘poetics of food’ hosted at the Ace Hotel in Shoreditch.

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A day filled to the brim with an assortment of speakers each with their own area of expertise saturated our senses. A food in art historian, a seasonal supperclub extraordinaire, a pianist-perfumist combo who experiment with tantalizing numerous senses and a couple of hybrid chefs blurring the lines between art and science to name a few.

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Films were screened including the premier of ‘Future of Food’. I have to admit I (Aspen) got seriously excited when my supervisor Prof. Mark Post appeared on screen showcasing the cultured meat technology from Maastricht University. There are so many astounding technologies being developed all over the world, and cultured meat is definitely acknowledged as one of them. Not only for the ground breaking tech, but also a stimulus for prompting people to review what they put in their mouth.

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The final experience was transfixing to watch. Two men, painting with seasonal produce, poured pure creativity, fervent emotion, and beautiful harmony onto the canvas to electrifying music. The painting, went through stages of minimalist, to conventional beauty to almost cluttered. In a daze, it made us ponder how we become so superficially attached to material goods and superficial aesthetics, which at any moment can vanish. Our efforts and love should be channeled into less tangible things such as our world and its inhabitants. The music broke of into a stillness and bread was torn. English taboos were broken as we all licked fingers and smeared spirals of food together.

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To conclude the floor opened up for discussion. The resounding message the audience took away was hope. We are not alone. These people truly care and are doing something to break the status-quo.

The raw passion of all involved in the day touched both of us. No actually it was deeper than that, it resonated with us. It electrified our senses and unearthed desire that had long been dormant. Both of us are involved in the food movement, however it left us LONGING to connect with people and community. And we will, well we have, as it has already begun. This is the catalyst for change and we are products of the people we surround ourselves with. These are the type of people you want to surround yourself with, because together we can change the world.


Reporters: Abi Aspen Glencross and Freya Rose Tanner ¦ @AbiAspen ¦ @freyarosetanner

Website ¦ /FEEDUK

Twitter: @xmodal ¦ #crossmodalism ¦ @TEDxHackney ¦ @TEDx


Photographs courtesy of Daniel Vais


Check out the work of all the Speakers and participants:

Charles Michel – Chef, Scientist, Food philosopher ¦ @charlesmichel__

Atsuko Ikeda – Japanese food expert ¦

Cristine Leone – Head Chef & Creator of Ivy’s Mess Hall and Lobster Bar ¦

Gillian Riley – Food historian

Daniel Ospina – Experience designer and chef ¦ /danielospinabotero

Professor Barry Smith – Director of the Institute of Philosophy ¦

Georgina Hayden – Food Stylist ¦ /georgiefood

Janice Wang – President, Oxford Blind Tasting Society ¦ @rbrainengineer

Tereza Stehlíková – Artist ¦ @TerezaGoldfinch