Live Dining history 2009, 2007, 2005-06 and Corn Dining 2004


« Live Dining » est concept adaptable, performance, installation-cuisine-salle-à-manger avec plantes et arbres, développement d’écosystèmes, biodiversité, et diversité de communautés et d’individus. L’art est d'allié les actions de planter, récolter, préparer, composter, cuisiner et dîner, sur la place d'agriculture urbaine et plantes naturalisées. L'art est dans nos liens avec les sources de notre nourriture-médicine préventive, essentiel pour une vie en santé.

The LIVE DINING PROCESS July 3rd, 9th, 17th, 21st, 22nd, 23rd, 25th 29th and 31st

Tuesday, July 3rd , 2007

small plants growing, I see the earth. I see the soil.

Today, July 3rd, I went by to check on the plants. I have not needed to water since a week ago, because of the rain. All is well, growing and there has but no destruction. This has been a slight fear, since the inefficiently made table, was broken after the 24th of June. One of the branches I chose, as one of the legs of the table, was in effect, not solid enough, It would not have taken much, such as someone sitting on the table, (I think) for it to break. So the table was fixed and a more solid branch was replaced as the leg of the table.

The table is made of found and remnant pieces of wood materials. The table top was found in the garbage, with parts of the wood in the process of decomposing. When I began to construct the table, by securing the branches, as legs, to this decomposing table top, spiders and other bugs starting emerging from the wood. The table is a home to insects, as well as serving the LIVE DINING project. Insects are so important to the growth of plants and the health of soil, that give us healthy, nourrishing food.

The LIVE DINING table was constructed in an inefficient way, not all the screws screwed in, because of knots in the wood, bits and pieces fitted here and there. And yet it is functional and serves the purpose of a table.

Monday, July 9th, 2007

All was relatively well in the urban agriculture space, the polyculture (as opposed to monoculture) space, the LIVE DINING space. But some raccoons, had destroyed 3 corn plants.

Tuesday, July 17th, 2007

Saturday, July 21st, 2007
I met with Speranza, to have a meal, made up of leftovers from our homes. We heated up the leftovers on a stove in the LIVE DINING space. And we harvested one bean that was ready, shared it and hate it.

Sunday, July 22nd, 2007

Yes, and it is about plants growing, that produce our food, ... seeing the process, through images....

And then,

something disappeared....between July 17th and July 19th 2007....

details of what was there, but is no longer.....and of course what is there and continues to grow.....

What the LIVE DINING installation, agricultural polyculture space looked like with the chair removed

Monday, July 23rd, 2007
it was dark, we lit candles. We had lemon balm and yarrow tea, that we harvested from the LIVE DINING space. We were myself, Catherine and my two sons. My younger son took pictures by candelight.

Wednesday July 25th, 2007



..... more to come on the installation of the Stool-chair, ... and... LIVE DINING with Suzanne Harwood and Suzanne's friend Karen (from London)... ........

The LIVE DINING furniture

The fact that one of the original chairs put in the LIVE DINING for articule, was taken or stolen, made me think about writing further about the furniture of LIVE DINING at articule.

every chair is different - as a representation of diversity
some found
some used
some new
some fallling apart and solidified
some rusting
some made of plastic, or aluminum, or vinyl, or fiberglass, with or without paint, with or without color

and the new live dining chair goes with the live dining table in front of articule

*The new live dining chair is meant to be uneven, imperfectly made, to sink into the earth, to be on the soil.

the new Live dining chair is called the stool-chair to replace the stolen, found modified chair

One of the stool-chair's legs, the front leg, is a lilac tree trunk part, which dates from 2004, 3 years ago. It had been left outside on the earth, and became a home to an ant colony and other bugs. So it is decomposing, like the table top I found, but it is still very solid for now, and one of the main legs of the stool-chair. In that way it watches the table, which relates to the idea of matching items, colors and forms in our home, to create an aesthetic dining, living experience.

The idea of decomposition and awareness that the chair will not last, is one of the ideas that comes out of the concept of live dining. decomposition is emphasized in when we prepare the harvest for cooking, and the non-edible parts and put onto the earth in the garden, to validate their process of decomposition that will occur after the particular live dining moment over the duration of the live dining garden and the season.

I decided to make the stool chair because I did not have a found chair that seem to fit. In the same way i was inspired to make the table, I felt inspired to have a chair that carried the same concept as the table, which is a table made out of found and discarded, imperfect pieces of wood and branches, that are bits and pieces that have odd measurements and branches that have been pruned or cut from trees or scrubs in the goal of maintaining and controling growth or for reasons of wanting a “clean”, orderly, pleasing to the eye, perfected, efficient look.

the Stool-Chair (that replaced one of the original live dining chairs, in front of articule)

The Stool Chair is made of branches from pruning, a 3 year old rotting trunk of lilac tree, which was cut down when redoing the foundation of a house, a good chunk of bark, with the fresh, flesh of wood from a 50 year old maple tree that fell down during a very windy, rainy storm around March 2007, and the rest are discarded pieces of pine and cedar wood, with twigs of a cherry tree and dryed stem of an unidentified sunflower species of plant from fall 2006.

Live Dining clarification

Live Dining is in process. There was the live dining performance at the launch june 23rd
where, vegetables placed on the soil, were picked from the soil, as a symbolic act of harvesting.....
the live dining performance at the end will be with the harvest from the space
the end of July and beginning of august there will be live dining performances upon request or when i know when people are coming to visit live dining installation

So to clarify, i will not be live dining everyday. The process is the plants growing . Live dining is the plants growing. live dining is the chairs and table in the earth. live dining is when people come sit and dine from harvests from the live dining agricultural space, having herbal teas harvested from the live dining ground or food made from vegetables growing in the ground. live dining is the interaction that takes place as passersby engage with those sitting, through the medium of the plants growing - the plants that are our food, through a smile, through a questionning look, through saying what a nice garden, and asking the question: what is this about. It is audience engaging with me, with the work, with questions, together.....
Live Dining in process

the urban agriculture polyculture space is growing.

Everyone refers to it as a garden. I use the words agriculture and polyculture to remind of our connection to food production systems that do not have to be large scale, nor in the countryside (in rural spaces).

The concern for high yields, for the amount of food a plant can produce – the amount of vegetable or fruit that comes out of a plant seems to be a concern in the world of agriculture and farming.

But if yields are not a concern, if we get smaller yields, less yields, less food, is it okay?

When we farm on a very small scale, and gardening in the city we come to call small scale urban polyculture agriculture, maybe we accept what is growing well and what did not grow so well (smaller yields) and it is okay. We relinquish control over how much food we get and which crop specie did best and which did not, We accept to not control yields or the amount of harvest we get. For the point here is not about dollars, profit on the export market for the agri-food businesses and related corporations, who profit from monoculture agriculture and value of promoting high yields, the most veggies per plant crop. So if you want to get as much out of your soil and plants, you will want to use the fertilizers and best breed seeds and monoculture – one crop harvesting and transforming efficiency


Tuesday, July 31st, 2007

On tuesday July 31st, Kirsten Forkert joined me for lemon balm tea and a "french cuisine" style dining, on beans and flower, a bit of basil and nasturtium leaves. That is, only 5 beans were ready to harvest, and they were delicioius! Placed in a plate, the uniqueness of each bean, it's color, shape, size, I felt we appreciated and then savored, after being boiled slightly in water.
Gerard Leckey, taking a break from doing some work inside articule, also came to join us for a break