Black chefs, however talented they are, frequently struggle to get proper representation outside of the kitchens they work in. There are a great many out there who, in a slightly more equitable world, would be considerably more well-known both within the industry and beyond.
So photographer Julian George has decided one small way to help combat this is to represent them… in photography.
Thus Made You Look was born: it’s part exhibition, part supperclub, with black chefs making up both the images and the menus. It’s all taking place at Carousel, the permanent pop up venue in Marylebone. Here’s how it works:
The exhibition is on at Carousel’s Next Door Gallery space (so-called because it’s literally next door). The portraits are all in black & white, each with a dash of striking colour. The idea is to try and bring a little of each chef’s personalities to the fore, and to provoke the viewer into finding out a little more about them. You’ll see food-smiths like Zoe Adjonyoh, James Cochran, Kerth Gumbs, Nokx Majozi and William Chilila, some you may have heard of, many you may not have. But that’s sort of the point. Then, if you’ve booked your seats at the supperclub, it’s then off the venue, well, next door.
Why yes this IS one of William Chilila’s Yam Bon Bons
The dinners will take place throughout July, and will showcase tasting menus of modern African & Caribbean cuisine from one of the chefs on the walls each night. Opeoluwa Odutayo will be treating diners to suya smoked chicken with puff puff, a little yaji short rib, and some roasted plantain ice cream. Kerth Gumbs will be cooking up some pork loin with celeriac lasagne & truffle honey, as well as not-cooking kingfish ceviche with white radish. Whoever’s in the kitchen, it’s probably going to be great. And everyone gets a welcome cocktail.
See? You can already picture yourself there…
NOTE: Made You Look runs until 23rd July. Tickets are limited to just 40 per evening and include a private view of the exhibition hosted by Julian George & a welcome cocktail. They’re all available at Carousel’s website right HERE.
Carousel | 71 Blandford Street, Marylebone, W1U 8AB
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