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Palate to Palette

by Sarah Miller

‘Veronica’s Offering’ by Alonsa Guevara in ‘Recipe’ at The Vendue.

“With the upcoming opening of The Vendue’s new restaurant, Revival, the timing seemed right to combine two of Charleston’s strongest offerings, art and food, for our next major exhibition,” explains The Vendue’s art director Emily Rigsby. Inviting a diverse group of artists whose styles and mediums span the art world, each creator has taken their own approach to the thematic art show, Recipe.

“Each artist has been challenged to use their favorite recipe as a jumping off point to create a piece conceptually inspired by it—palette to palate inspiration if you will,” says Rigsby. Each work will be displayed with its corresponding recipe next to it, so visitors will be able to connect the dots and even take the recipe home with them to try.

We’re previewing five of the 30 extraordinary works featured in Recipe. Be sure to stop by The Vendue to experience this delicious exhibit in full force, on view now through October at 19 Vendue Range, Charleston SC.


43” x 24”, acrylic, paper, wax, fabric, metals, resin on canvas

I Am The Recipe; A Portrait of Beverly Wise | Miller Gallery

“Ms. Beverly Jean Wise is the illustrious definition of gracious goodness. Never arriving with an empty hand, not a day goes by that she is not in her kitchen cooking a meal for a family or picking up food for others. From preparing meals for a former President to feeding her church family and community, Beverly’s love for feeding others is unfailingly apparent through her gift of giving. Ms.Wise has served as a prominent caregiver to the Mungo family for over 20 years, where she currently takes care of two of the youngest children. Her countless gifts of goodness include, but are never limited to, dozens of fresh eggs, perfectly picked watermelons, and exquisitely cooked greens. Beverly Wise is not just an exceptional cook with a selfless soul, she is a luminary who enriches the lives of  many with her love and light. She is the recipe.”  – Miles Purvis


19” x 13” x 3”, mixed media assemblage

The Sweetest Heaven (I Will Wait) | Art Mecca

Assemblage artists are often recipients of strange gifts: old spoons, spools of thread, unique, dried bugs, pretty much anything. Robin Howard was gifted a 1942 pocket date book belonging to a John Campagnoli, and she swiftly began her investigative research. What ever happened to John and his Millie, who on May 8, 1942, “stayed out until 2 am”? And then on May 12, 1942, “didn’t come home” at all? Howard ensures us there is a happy ending to this mysterious love story, but she also generously includes the recipe to her “marriage-saving brownies” so we can all bounce back like John and Millie.


30” x 40”, oil on panel

Arm To Table | Robert Lange Studios

Perfectly punny, Lange chose one of Charleston’s most renowned chefs, Sean Brock, as his muse for this hyperrealistic painting Arm to Table. This is not the first time Brock’s sleeve of heirloom variety veggies has been in the spotlight. In 2012 his tattooed arm and a handful of carrots made it to the pages of Vogue. Lange’s large oil on panel exquisitely depicts each piece of produce gracing Brock’s colorful arm, but also includes one of his signature painting elements, mirror-like reflections directed back at the viewer. Arm to table on a farm table has never looked so good.


36” x 40”, oil on linen

Beet Red Velvet | Mitchell Hill

There are a dozen reasons why Stewart-Sanabria’s Beet Red Velvet painting is so enticing, but what takes the cake is the artist actually baked, wallpapered, and staged the whole still life, in real life. Like it does for so many of her food-themed works of art, the creative process started in her kitchen. The artist “Frankensteined” a personal carrot cake recipe into a naturally red, coconut-beet cake. Stewart-Sanabria used her University of Massachusetts fine arts education and cooking skills to get us drooling.


44” x 60”, watercolor on paper

The Boar | Robert Lange Studios

What could be mistaken for a vintage butcher’s chart, Grasso’s painting successfully allows the viewer to befriend his cheery boar as well as want to safely devour it. Grasso typically sticks to a limited color palette, which gives his highly detailed works an eerie enchantment. What is arguably as enchanting is his claim to bi-annually butcher his own wild boar when his car mechanic returns from Virginia “for an extra fee of leftover Vicodin from [my] wisdom tooth surgery and a fifth of juniper gin,” he says.

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Posted in Visual on April 19, 2018 (The Festival Issue 2018) by Matt Mill.

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