In the more than twenty years that Denver's Viviane Le Courtois has been making art, a good percentage of it has been related to food in some way: where food comes from, what happens to it along the way, what its role is in our communal lives. It's very interesting work, with a message that clearly favors sustainable and DIY solutions. The progression of that work over those twenty-some years is now the subject of Edible?, a show that entwines a retrospective with a new installation, The Garden of Earthly Delights, and opens tonight at the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art.
"I wanted to do something that is interactive and will make people think about what they eat and how easy it is to grow their own food," Le Courtois explains, describing the piece as an "interactive, living installation with plants growing. There will be all kinds of herbs and and microgreens and green vegetables growing and changing over the time of the exhibit." Typical of much of the artist's installation work, Garden includes other scratch-made elements, such as rugs hooked from recycled T-shirts collected from friends, where gallery-goers can relax among the growing things. Le Courtois will also be on site on Saturdays, serving garden greens and tea (made from herbs growing in the installation) in handmade, disintegrating low-fire clay cups.
"They are inspired by the chai cups they use in India," she says. "They serve the chai in a cup that is low-fire and so fragile that you can drink from one once and then throw it away out the window, and it just dissolves."
Walk through Edible? (the question mark, Le Courtois notes, relates to the fact that some things in the show, such as her satirical Little Fat Kids made of hard candy, are not really edible, at least not from her point of view) through June 17; sculptures by Jason Rogenes are also on view. For details, call 303-443-2122 or go to www.bmoca.org.
Feb. 23-June 14, 2012