Doug Aitken’s pre-Station to Station Food Happening

I’ve been helping curate the music for Doug Aiken’s upcoming “happening,” Station to Station, for the last few months and last night he invited us all over for culinary delights by underground San Franciscan chef Leif Hedendal. Along with Alice Waters, Leif is going to be conceptualizing the food for the train journey, which starts in New York on September 6th and ends in San Francisco on the 28th. Doug wanted to film Leif preparing his famous finger food as a precursor of what is to come, with the behind-the-scenes Station to Station crew reaping the delicious benefits!

Leif Hedendal

Leif Hedendal © Mara McKevitt

Doug filmed a conversation series for the Tate Liverpool Biennial at the end of last year, called The Source, and this filmed series will be a kind of sequel to that, with snippets of the interviews being streamed on the Station to Station website leading up to the Sept. event.

Doug Filming the Happening

Doug Filming the Happening

Here is a conversation Doug filmed with James Turrell at the LACMA last month, where Turrell’s retrospective is currently being exhibited: http://vimeo.com/69357924. One of the September stops will be in Winslow, near to where Turrell’s famous Roden Crater – an extinct volcano that he has been transforming into a work of art since the 1970s – is located.

The Station to Station happening will be a month-long moving target, travelling from coast to coast, with 9 official events and 2 surprise pop-up stops. At each venue, there will be musicians playing to Doug’s projections, art installations, whip crackers, extraordinary marching bands you couldn’t possibly have heard of, with food curated by Chez Panisse’s Alice Waters and last night’s star, Leif Hedendal.

The roster of artists who will be involved include Kenneth Anger, Urs Fischer, Olaf Breuning, Peter Coffin, Ed Ruscha, Meschac Gaba, Liz Glynn, Carsten Höller, Christian Jankowski, Aaron Koblin, Ernesto Neto, Jack Pierson, Stephen Shore, Rirkrit Tiravanija, Lawrence Weiner, and of course James Turrell – an impressive lineup, even for a contemporary art amateur such as myself.

The music will include collaborations by Sun Araw + The Congos, and the ethereal Charlotte Gainsbourg + Connan Mockasin, my favorite psychedelic artist of the last two years. If you haven’t already, I insist you check out this beautifully crafted – and very surreal – music video, from the New Zealanders’ debut album Forever Dolphin Lovehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7CaTJ2SvG8.

There will also be performances by Beck, Savages, No Age, Ariel Pink, THEESatisfaction, Dan Deacon, David Longstreth of the Dirty Projectors, Eleanor Friedberger, Nite Jewel, Handsome Family, Lia Ices & Twin Shadow, as well a plethora of names we have yet to announce 😉

Back to the food… I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves…. There weren’t any entrees but, as “finger food” implies, it was all bite size and yet substantial enough to have left us satiated.

Leif was kind enough to share his menu with me (see below).

Now I can’t wait for the full experience in September….

Here’s the Station to Station interview with Leif and his recipe for Sea Bream Cucumbers:

Pimientos

Pimientos © Mara McKevitt

Cucumbers with Raw Sea Bream

Cucumbers with Raw Sea Bream © Leif Hedendal

Leif Hedendal

Leif Hedendal

Doug Aitken in his Kitchen

Doug Aitken in his Kitchen

IMG_3798

Cucumbers © Mara McKevitt

Leif Hedendal preparing the finger food

Leif Hedendal preparing the finger food

Roasted Shitake with Uni & Bone Marrow © Leif Hedendal

Roasted Shitake with Uni & Bone Marrow © Leif Hedendal

Leif with Sam Falls, one of the Station to Station artists

Leif with Sam Falls, one of the Station to Station artists

Fried Quail

Fried Quail

Braised Lamb Shank

Braised Lamb Shank

Roasted Corn on Amaranth Leaf

Roasted Corn on Amaranth Leaf

Blenheim Apricot

Blenheim Apricot

Mulberries!

Mulberries!

Celebrating the Chef

Celebrating the Chef

pimientos de padron

cucumbers–raw sea bream-purslane-fennel-apple-dill-sorrel-lemon

—-

fried quail-surinam cherry-curry leaf-thai basil-kaffir lime-jalapeno-fish sauce

roasted shitake–uni–bone marrow-shiso-ponzu

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toast–lamb shank-ruby streak mustard greens-currants-marjoram-argan oil-sumac-preserved lemon

(braise: onion, fennel, thyme, red wine)

amaranth leaf-roasted corn-sungold tomato-radish-tarragon-basil-chives-vinegar-olive oil

—-

blenheim apricot-lime mint-anise hyssop

santa rosa plum-lemon verbena

mulberries

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