Kate Armstrong grew up on a farm in upstate New York, where, if her family didn't grow it, they didn't need it. "We may not have had much money, but we had great food," she says. More important, they had healthy food, which has become less common in the half-century since the 67-year-old's childhood.
Armstrong decided to do something about that. Known as the Urban Forager, she spent years teaching herself the ins, outs and risks of eating whatever's around her. At the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, she's sharing the skill in conjunction with artist Viviane Le Courtois, who spent a week eating nothing but foraged food to prepare for her retrospective. Over midday tea, fellow foragers will dine on salad they scavenged around the museum using tips from Armstrong's years of pro-weed politics.
For anyone who's seen Into the Wild, don't fret: Armstrong also knows what to leave alone. In her practice trips around the area, she unearthed violets, lambsquarters, curly dock, chickweed, dandelions and mint, all edible as long as they stay rooted. "I'd like people to get a sense of safety out of this," Armstrong says. "If all else fails, they don't have to starve."
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Urban Foraging with Armstrong begins at 11 a.m. today at the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, 1750 13th Street in Boulder. For tickets, $20 to $25, and more information, call 303-443-2122 or visit www.bmoca.org.
Sat., April 21, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., 2012