Filed under: Food

Gastronomic Design Festival

A summer programme that moves between different disciplines focusing on our food culture. We present our first set of events that will activate our minds and senses, discovering how artistic strategies contribute to the discussion of the politics of food.

What does our food heritage look like and what is its significance in a time when our city becomes more diverse? Food can often be the first step into a culture and by working in collaboration with various designers, artists and chefs, we’ve arranged a festival that eats through different cultures.

Together we will discuss the politics of food and ask questions of how artistic strategies can contribute to the discussion of cultural heritage, migration and the political dimension of gastronomy. But mainly it’s all about having fun and eating good food!


May 10 — Dinner by Aydin & Vargö for invited guests from Invitationsdepartementet.

May 24 — ’Babette’s Feast’, Film screening & Food at Dome of Visions. Tickets:

June tba — IRL, a storytelling event by HEXprocessen and an edible ice installation by Francesca Lusuardi at Brännkyrkagatan 13.

June tba — Garlic, a tasting experience by Denisa Kollarová and Nina Fránková. Location tba.

July 1 — New Cuisine, a workshop and talk at Hötorgsterassen with Ayhan Aydin, Matinstitutet and Roos Juten.

All you need to know

Tickets to our first event, a film screening on May 24th, are out now! Tickets to the rest of the programme will be released shortly.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to email us at

Supported by Stockholms stad.

*Image: Babette’s Feast from Curzon Artificial Eye.


Feminist Film Screening

Together with curator Kim McAleese, Underverk presented a set of feminist film screenings punctuated by food provided by meal ecologist Ayhan Aydin and experience designer Josefin Vargö, who translated certain elements from the film into taste.

A set of food snacks were presented during Underverk’s feminist film screenings, co-curated together with Kim McAleese.

For each film certain elements were translated into taste and interaction. Produced together with meal ecologist Ayhan Aydin.

Film 1: La Blanchisseuse, Rohesia Hamilton, 1993.

An experimental video examining the emotional and aesthetic underpinnings of the tendency that still exists for women to take a greater responsibility than men for domestic work and nurturing. The images of a woman ironing pay homage in their composition to paintings of laundresses by such artists as Edgar Degas, Honor, Daumier, Edouard Manet, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec and others. Many of the paintings of laundresses by these artists create an ambiguously gentle impression, portraying the task of laundry as sensual, feminine, and producing contentment.

La Blanchisseuse examines the relationship between the images with which we have grown up and the expectations women place upon themselves. Equally poignant texts; from Intrusion (Denise Levertov), Snapshots of a Daughter-in-Law (Adrienne Rich), and To The Lighthouse (Virginia Woolfe) scroll over the images, alluding both to the pull of tradition for a woman to provide nurturing care to others and to the sense of betrayal and rejection that can be the reward for providing such care.

FOOD ACCOMPANIMENT: Steamed dumplings, filled with foraged greens, served in linens on an ironing board. The texture is very soft, while the taste goes from subtle to bitter tones to resemble the conflict of domestic labour.

Film 2: Semiotics of the Kitchen, Martha Rosler, 1975

In this performance Rosler takes on the role of an apron-clad housewife and parodies the television cooking demonstrations popularized by Julia Child in the 1960s. Standing in a kitchen, surrounded by refrigerator, table, and stove, she moves through the alphabet from A to Z, assigning a letter to the various tools found in this domestic space. Wielding knives, a nutcracker, and a rolling pin, she warms to her task, her gestures sharply punctuating the rage and frustration of oppressive women’s roles.
Rosler has said of this work, “I was concerned with something like the notion of ‘language speaking the subject,’ and with the transformation of the woman herself into a sign in a system of signs that represent a system of food production, a system of harnessed subjectivity.”

FOOD ACCOMPANIMENT: ‘Semiotics of a carrot’; X small carrot cubes, Y dried purple carrots, Z carrot caramels, showing the value of an ingredient. This was shared on a long wooden board, between 3-4 people.

FIlm 3: Our Time Is Coming, Selma James, 1971.
Selma James, a socialist and feminist, uses her own experiences working in low-paid jobs and being a mother and housewife as a starting point in this investigation into whether women are exploited in all areas of society. Interviews with full-time housewives, and with females who work outside the home but still do almost all of the household chores, reveal the true extent of women’s work. James goes on to ask whether equal pay outside the home and a real division of housework between men and women will ever become a reality.

In 1972, a year after this programme was broadcast, a key work by Selma James, Power of Women and the Subversion of the Community, was published. In this, she expands on the ideas put forward in the programme and argues that the entire labour market is built upon the unpaid work of women. Also in 1972, James set up the International Wages for Housework Campaign, which argues that running the home should be recognised as work in official statistics and that people doing this labour should be paid a wage by the government.

FOOD ACCOMPANIMENT: A big pot with a miso-dashi soup, served in paper mugs. They will huddle around two small bonfires, the perfect environment to create a communal feeling for discussions and opinions.

Supported by Stockholms Stad and CuratorLab Konstfack.


Feminist film screenings: 12 May

For many women, the home was a natural subject of artistic production as a highly charged site of rampantly contradictory meanings. As Lucy Lippard noted, ‘[women artists] work from such [household] imagery because it’s there, because it’s what they know best, because they can’t escape it.’

Together with curator Kim McAleese, Underverk presents a set of feminist film screenings punctuated by food provided by meal ecologist Ayhan Aydin and experience designer Josefin Vargö, who have translated certain elements from the film into taste.

In this film programme, the artists explore domestic issues such as motherhood, familial relationships, control of physical space and the preparation and consumption of food.

20:00-20:30 — Course 1: Blanchisseuse, a steamed introduction.
20:40-20:50 — Course 2: Semiotics of the Carrot, the value of an ingredient.
21:00-22:00 — Course 3: Our time is coming, communal soup experience.

Limited food, available on first come, first served basis.

Ayhan Aydin (Meal Ecologist) works interdisciplinary with how the food system as a whole functions. Aydin integrates social sciences, natural sciences, food craftsmanship and practical farming. Ayhan has previously participated in the projects Restaurant roam (Parkteatern), Fittja Open (Botkyrka Konsthall), Nordic Sound Bite (New Nordic Food). In the three different projects, food has been a central and fundamental part of the story.

Photo from Rohesia Hamilton Metcalfe: La Blanchisseuse (1993)

Supported by Stockholms Stad and CuratorLab Konstfack.


Housewarming Dinner at Konsthall C

In Konsthall C’s kitchen, together with curator Kim McAleese, Underverk invited commercial ‘chef’ and a domestic ‘cook’ to respond to the questions posed in the Mierle Laderman Ukeles’ Manifesto for Maintenance Art.

Produced in 1969, the manifesto connected to other feminist activities around the world which began to articulate the gendered inequities between paid and unpaid labour. The chefs Josefin Günther and Magdalena Günther were invited to make a dinner, using the food as their material to convey what they believe to be ‘maintenance work’ as an attempt to readdress the issues raised in Ukeles manifesto.

The dinner was part of the public program of the Ukeles exhibition at Konsthall C, the idea being that members of the public are invited to engage in some of her thoughts and artistic concepts over a meal in the space.

30 guests joined the dinner and together we discussed our thoughts about maintenance work with the following four courses:

First Course
The Perfect Façade
A selection of vegetarian and vegan canapés

Main Course
The Sacrifice…Blood, Sweat and Ears
Polish beetroot soup and Uszka

The Disposal
To be enjoyed with your hands

After Dessert
The Notion
One for everyone to take away

Josefin Günther is a sommelier currently working as a freelance writer. Food, beverages, scents and flavours have always been a very big and natural part of her life and she is always looking to add new scents and flavours to her palate. Finding new ways of expressing what we experience when we eat and drink is an ongoing home-project of hers.

Originally from Poland, Magdalena Günther came to Stockholm via Copenhagen where she attended a College of Arts. Her entire professional career as a graphic designer/art director has been spent trying to juggle work, family and social interactions. Her passion lies in exploring gastronomy and culture from other countries, and she has always cooked.

Photos by Konsthall C and Underverk



During Stockholm Design Week 2015 Nina Bačun and Maja Kolar from the OAZA design collective held a one hour food workshop in conjunction with an exhibition showcasing products from their ’Handed Down Collection’.

Participants were first given a descriptive presentation of the products, their functional contemporary use and their historical background relating to Croatian traditions and craft. OAZA then served a traditional wine soup together with polenta, bread, anchovies and olive oil, all ingredients from Croatia.

Leading up to the exhibition Studio Daphne Zuilhof lured in curious visitors with intriguing light reflections. Zuilhof works with the subtle beauty of light reflections, evoking wonder and curiosity. In the outside space leading up to the exhibition lights are placed with an intriguing effect, created with the modest means of light and water.

Underverk’s co-founder Josefin Vargö curated the experience and graphic designer Ludwig Haslberger designed a limited edition towel for the event.

Photography: Stephanie Wiegner



During Stockholm Design Week 2015 and in collaboration with UNDERVERK, Nina Bačun and Maja Kolar from the design collective OAZA hold a one hour food workshop while discussing Croatian ingredients, craft and design. Guests get to taste a traditional Croatian wine soup served with polenta, bread, anchovies and Croatian olive oil inspired by their showcased products. Together we learn how to pickle anchovies using their product ‘Preserving Summer’.

*All guests receive an exclusive kitchen towel designed by Ludwig Haslberger made for the event.

Guests must be 18 years of age and older.

Book tickets here.

Time: 17:30 – 18:30
Location: Brännkyrkagatan 13, Stockholm


Food tasting — Potential diversity of Japanese food: 21 September

On August 31 Yurie Hama, owner of café Kikusen and Wataru Adachi from LYCKA Japan & Sweden held a Food Tasting event outside the East Asian Museum.

People could discover how different ingredients in a Japanese meal.

“A fundamental aspect of Japanese cuisine is its ability to explore the possibilities and exploit the potential of a small number of basic elements which are then turned into a large variety of another element. As an example, a soybean breaks down into Edamame, tofu, miso and soy sauce … Each offspring has a unique taste which sometimes makes us forget that they come from one element.”

If you missed the event, it will take place this Sunday, September 21, again at the same spot.


Food Lab: 24 August

It’s the end of summer, start of Autumn and a good time to start pickling so as to stock up over winter. It’s also time to enjoy the opportunity of being outdoors. For Underverk’s Season 3 Chef Aaron Colman and Experience DesignerJosefin Vargö have designed a Food Lab set in the hidden and often forgotten music pavilion in Tantolunden, Zinkensdamm. This two hour Lab explores the concept of a Hot Dog and what it could be. There will be plenty of food to try.

Though we believe in putting plants first the lab is suitable for vegans, vegetarians and meat lovers.

August 24th, 14:00—16:00
Pavilion in Tantolunden, Zinkensdamm

Buy tickets here to secure a spot.

Photo by Josefin Vargö

Supported by Stockholms Stad


Food tasting — Potential diversity of Japanese food: 31 Aug — 21 Sep

August 31 & 21 September, 12:00—tbc
Parking spot outside the East Asian Museum

Yurie Hama, owner of café Kikusen and Wataru Adachi from LYCKA Japan & Sweden have put together a
Japanese food tasting. A fundamental aspect of Japanese cuisine is its ability to explore the possibilities and exploit the potential of a small number of basic elements which are then turned into a large variety of another element. As an example, a soybean breaks down into Edamame, tofu, miso and soy sauce … Each offspring has a unique taste which sometimes makes us forget that they come from one element.

At the food tasting you can taste four different basic elements originally from Japan, both in a lunch meal and a dessert drink. Discover how taste of the element changes between the borderline of meal and dessert with a powerful potential of each element, as well as sharing your taste experience with others over the borderline between private space and public space!

Photo by Yurie Hama and Lycka Japan & Sweden


Video: Sense Lab

Sense Lab is an exhibition form where people engage in sensory experiments that stimulate and awakens all our senses by using our smell, sight, sound, taste, touch and intuition in new combinations.

Curated by Underverk showcasing work by Maja Frögård, Andrejs Ljunggren, Henrik Ljunggren, Jacob Stenman, Daphne Zuilhof, Cecilia Callander and Josefin Vargö.