Arts » Visual Arts

Food Con: Where art & food collide

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Food Con, an unconventional convention, began as a small idea and has grown into a community wide event. Joanna Taft, Harrison Center for the Arts, wanted to create an environment full of art and learning based around the sustainable food movement in Indiana. With the help of hard-working interns, the Indiana Humanities Council, and many others, Joanna's wish will come true on March 5. From 6-10 p.m. at Harrison Center for the Arts. "Gamers have Gen Con, so why can't 'foodies' have Food Con," Taft says.

Butler University Senior, Kristin Hess will be exhibiting her capstone project entitled, "Farmer's Market Society." Her project includes a floor-to-ceiling collage of 800 photographs from farmer's markets around Indiana, a film, design pieces, and an activity for everyone to enjoy. "Farmer's Markets are a fascinating environment to observe. They are all interconnecting," Hess says when describing the meaning behind her exhibit.

There will be a wide range of art exhibited during this event, such as work from Bruce Campbell, Kyle Ragsdale, Carolyn Springer, Penelope Dullaghan and Leah Gauthier. All studios will be open for viewing. Poetry is being performed and you will be able to write your own food haiku. Many of the activities are going to be interactive, such as a progressive story that will be led by a writers' group from the Harrison Center. The progressive story will be revealed at the end of the event and will be a great way to incorporate the art of writing with the art of food. Along with writing, you can expect to view various films.

Guests will be able to speak with representatives from the Dept. of Agriculture, owners of local individual farmer's markets and producers like Trader's Point Creamery, Broad Ripple Farmer's Market, Good Earth, and Goose House, to name a few. All of the representatives will be in the gym of the Harrison Center and will be available to answer questions and some will have products on hand to sell. If you would like to learn more about composting, rain barrels or how to plan and plant an urban garden, speakers are hosting presentations to help you be a part of this movement towards sustainable food.

Ever bought a cucumber intending to take it home and play a song for the family? Most of us would answer "no", but after Food Con that could change. Members of the Herron High School Jazz band will form a vegetable orchestra, which will include music in this exploration of the art of food in Indiana.

There's also the Tomato Project, where tomato plants will be available to plant and then take home. Once the plant produces tomatoes, you are encouraged to donate the produce to a local food kitchen. This project was created by a Herron High School student wanting to assist the under-served in our community. Also, participate in a garden tool donation by bringing by that old shovel or rake that you haven't touched in five years. All proceeds will benefit urban gardens in Indy that need the tools.

This event is meant to bring people together for a common goal, a movement towards sustainable food and towards buying locally grown foods. Food Con will be a night of growing and learning for the community. As Joanna Taft says, "we wanted to bring everyone under one roof."

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