Camden’s COB Gallery lay on a hedonistic adventure for the eyes and mind with their current feast of an exhibition!
The art of fine dining has long been admired and appreciated in contemporary society. Much like a conceptual painting hanging on a white gallery wall, the originality and pleasing aesthetics of a meal can play as important a part as what the food actually tastes like. Chefs and artists alike are constantly playing with new technologies and ingredients to give maximum impact.
The COB Gallery in Camden have decided to act upon this idea and have teamed-up various artists with different chefs to host a series of conceptual one-off dinners that aim to satisfy both their guest’s hunger and visual appetite.
The first duo to collaborate are artist Walter Hugo (see here for i-D online’s scoop on Walter a while back) and Chef Daniel Morgan. Walter’s current exhibition Developing Shadows uses a unique technique of printing directly onto the walls to create a series of nudes taking on the form of monochromatic ‘photographic frescos’. These ephemeral portraits perfectly surround the table filled with tiny gastronomic works of edible art that culinary wizard Daniel Morgan will be serving.
i-D online chats to Daniel about his journey so far and what it is exactly that is on carte du jour this weekend.
How did you find yourself as a chef? My love of food came about when I was young. I worked in an Italian restaurant and fell in love with the flavours and atmosphere and it developed from there really. I moved to London when I was 19 and did an apprenticeship with The Ritz. From there I moved back up North to work in a 1 star restaurant called Fishers until I decided to move back London to learn more and went to work at Maze, one of Gordon Ramsey’s places.
Who in the culinary world do you admire and look to for inspiration? Grant Achatz who has been awarded three stars for his restaurant. He is inspiring not only for his success but he got throat cancer and lost all his taste buds and had to work through that to recover and earn everything back.
How would you describe your style of cooking? I have a classical palette but I really appreciate new concepts and new technologies. It allows me to experiment with new ingredients.
How did you go about designing the menu for the COB Gallery? For this one I didn’t meet with the artist but I wanted to create something that complimented the setting and the surrounding artwork. Walter Hugo is very experimental in his art so I wanted to reflect that in my menu. I wanted to give people food that they would question and think about. The COB gallery is an amazing space and the venue worked perfectly.
Do you have a dream guest who you would like to have over for a spot of supper? Egon Schiele because I like the controversial nature of his style and I’d like to pick his brains and find out what makes him tick!
Do you have a favourite British meal? I’m from up north so it’s got to be the Sunday Yorkshire Pudding!
Here is the menu that Daniel will be serving up this weekend at the COB gallery:
Squid quavers with wasabi pearls Black olive popcorn Watermelon tartare with honeydew yolk
Deconstructed Waldorf Salad Celery milk pannacotta, raisin purée, walnut granola
Popcorn Guinea Fowl with smoked sweetcorn salsa & maple foam
Apple Pie Screwball Blackberry jelly, sorrel, Bramley apple sorbet, apple chewing gum
The Walter Hugo Dinners will take place on Friday 4th and Saturday 5th November, head here to book.
Text: Michael Stephens