ImpressionArtExplorations of Eating Experiences

Explorations of Eating Experiences

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Studio Appétit takes one of the most basic human needs for survival into the next level. 

From a unique food presentation to an out-of-this-world food installation, it’s not hard to pinpoint the specific interest of Studio Appétit. Found in late 2010, the studio is a creative agency for food and culinary design, but there’s hardly a limit to their explorations of eating culture, habits, cravings and emotions triggered by food. 

According to IdoGarini, the CEO of Studio Appétit, what they do is called eating experience design. It combines the two core elements in today’s world. First, the main agenda of modern day design focuses on designing an experience and not just a product. Second, as an action done using all senses simultaneously, eating is one of the most potent ways to enhance an experience. Added with the fact that one need food to survive, it’s a common ground for all mankind and something that everyone relates to. These two insights merged into the idea behind Studio Appétit.

But even such strong idea wouldn’t go far without the proper understanding of the subjects touched by the studio. Despite Ido’s years of experience in restaurants, he took additional cooking courses and advanced food studies to further match his qualifications as a product and graphic designer. Just like how a fine meal is defined by both look and taste, the studio strives on the best balance between food and design, because when food is used in a playful or uncommon ways, it has to taste amazing or else people might think of it as mere gimmick. 

Currently Studio Appétit caters to a broad clientele, from big brands to private clients, design companies, hospitality industry and the public sector. The results of their explorations on food are translated into products, dining concepts, brand experiences, food, installations, pop-up dinners, lectures and workshops. To give you a glimpse of the scope of their works, the photo in this page was done for Bellboy Cocktail Bar, whose brief was to create a dining concept and restaurant art direction. Next, InClover asks Ido to share two of his favorite projects by Studio Appétit.

Things of Edible Beauty
“Things of Edible Beauty” is a platform of hyper-aesthetic food design and design for food. This is the main project we are working on this year and we are planning a series of events, exhibitions and product launches within it. We look at the ornamental value of food and ingredients while playing with a visual and physical temptation. It has a very modern, still-life art feel combined with a lush, sophisticated and mysterious flavor palate. We are treating the food in this project like fashion, offering flavor collections the way a fashion house would offer their clothes collection. 

In a recent project preview in the V&A Museum, we set a boutique-style installation where we presented “Amuse Bouche”, our flavor collection for Spring/Summer 2015 which contained Yuzu, Lemon Grass, Elder flower, Anise and Lime. We displayed it through conceptual products we are developing such as edible perfume, edible make up and jewelries embellished by food. Each season we will create a new flavor line as well as recipes and visual references.  

As part of this platform, we are currently collaborating with designers and companies around the world to design products from tableware to wall decoration and edible products. One of the first product lines is a design we made with Studio LennekeWispelwey called “Luscious Food Cravings”, redefining the way we prepare, serve and eat food into a more luxurious and sensual way. It’s a series of cones that are decorative, yet functional and provide you with not only a visual appeal but an added value of experience. These porcelain and dark chocolate cones come in different sizes to the replace the use of plates and utensils. 

The platform will be officially launched with the first set of products during the Milan Design Week in April 2015 and will also relate to the theme of the following world expo in May.

Eating Reflections – What Do You Look Like When You Eat?
Most of us are not aware of how we look like when we eat. As we have endless notions of the way we eat, our manners, and gestures, we rarely get the chance to look at ourselves while we eat. 

Designed as part of Studio Appetit’sAppetiting Lab, the project presents Eating Stations where you eat in front of a mirror. This allows you to reflect on how you look like when you eat, why you eat this way, and perhaps practice different methods for eating. Furthermore, the stations create a setting where you can experience what it is like to eat by yourself. This is a basic skill that we have often overlooked, since we consider eating a social action. However, the function of eating is individual, to sustain ourselves. Thus, the interaction we initiate with others around food does not serve the actual physical action of eating. 

The project was first presented in the Taste Festival 2012 in Berlin. Each station displayed a different type of food, which required participants to eat in very different ways, from the seductive bite of a strawberry to the jaw opening hamburger. After Berlin, the project was displayed in galleries and special food events that focus on contemporary food culture and the clash between food and design. They are still used in our studio’s lab for our ongoing research about eating, workshops and to check how the studio’s designs look like when they are used. 

The stations are made of Birch Wood and include a large mirror and an eating surface. The surface landscape varies, made of two replaceable wood tiles, each designed for a different type of food, hence for a different way of eating. The tiles include plate, coaster, bowl, cake stand, grill and bread board. 

photos by
HaimYosef, Masha Matijevic Studio Appétit