Savor: Food Culture in the Age of Enlightenment, The Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford, CT

February 29 - January 3, 2021

Savor: Food Culture in the Age of Enlightenment

Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford, Connecticut. 

Exhibition will re-open Fall 2020.

Fall 2020  — January 3, 2021.

Food and dining were transformed in Europe during the age of Enlightenment by profound changes that still resonate today. What many of us eat, the way food is cooked, and how we dine continues to be influenced by radical changes that occurred in France from 1650 until the French Revolution in 1789.

Savor: Food Culture in the Age of Enlightenment explores the story of this transformation with rare objects, fascinating histories, and amusing stories. We start in the kitchen gardens at Versailles where advances in horticulture expanded the growing seasons of vegetables and fruits, making a greater selection of foods available year-round. Then we visit the steamy kitchens of cooks who advocated light, flavourful cuisine centuries before our time. Next, we discover surprisingly modern philosophies for healthy eating and vegetarianism, and join ardent foodies as they savour meals served on newly invented ceramic and silver wares, from sauceboats to tureens. Along the way, we explore how social changes were impacting eating then, just as now, as the grand formality of the past was often abandoned in favour of informality and intimacy.

Savor: Food Culture in the Age of Enlightenment is organized by the Gardiner Museum and curated by Meredith Chilton, C.M., Curator Emerita. Works of art and objects from major North American museums and private collections, as well as key pieces of contemporary ceramics and knitted art, will come together in a delectable feast for the senses designed by Opera Atelier’s Resident Set Designer, Gerard Gauci.

Chris Antemann’s “A Little Feast of Folly”, was created in the artist’s studio in 2019. 

Previously Scheduled Events:

March 12, 2020- Gallery talk with Curator Linda Roth

March 19, 2020- Gallery talk with Meredith Chilton

March 25, 2020- Panel Discussion: The Dining Room Then and Now

Enjoy what promises to be a fascinating conversation about dining customs across cultures with culinary historian Jessica Harris, designer Thomas Jayne, educator David Dangremond, and curator Brandy Culp.  In conjunction with the exhibition, Savor: A Revolution in Food Culture. 5pm reception, 6pm Lecture.

April 9, 2020- Gallery Tour with Curator Jeff Munger

May 7, 2020- Ivan Day Lecture, 5pm reception and 6pm lecture