Saturday, April 10, 2010

Slow Food Ware

I am a huge fan of slow food.  If you haven't heard, the movement called "Slow Food" is a non-profit, eco-gastronomic member-supported organization that was founded in 1989 to counteract fast food and fast life, the disappearance of local food traditions and people’s dwindling interest in the food they eat, where it comes from, how it tastes and how our food choices affect the rest of the world.

In part, slow food is an awakening to the pleasures that food produced locally with traditional farming techniques can offer. There is an incredible range of diversity and flavour in the heritage of our food production, but it's being lost with the transition to large-scale farming. I prefer to enjoy the dozens of different varieties of tomatoes, picked fresh, each with different and intense flavours (in season) over the few varieties of tomatoes grown for their unique characteristic ability to be transported all over the world rather than for their taste. We have sacrificed a lot for the convenience of having any food in any season and especially we are sacrificing greatly for the production of "cheap" industrial food.

So with that in mind, I enjoy making functional dinner ware and I especially enjoy a slow food meal served on hand-crafted pottery. No two pieces of hand-crafted pottery are ever the same. And this is a beautiful thing. It is real life. It is beauty in the imperfect, beauty in diversity. 

So while even the most industrial pottery and ceramic production hasn't become as disconnected from its roots as standard food production has, there is something quite fitting and maybe even more satisfying about eating a slow food meal on a hand-crafted plate or bowl, if you can.