Posted on Wed 10 May 2017

Introducing our newest Artist in Residence

Introducing David Lisser and his new project Meal Plans, our latest residency hosted in collaboration with At Bristol.

Artist David Lisser cooking insects in his Future food café at Allenheads Village show, 2011

Artist David Lisser cooking insects in his Future food café at Allenheads Village show, 2011

We’re super pleased to introduce our newest Artist in Residence David Lisser. David has joined the communities at Pervasive Media Studio and At Bristol for the next few months to develop his new project Meal Plans that imagines the future of food as if it was history.

The World Bank notes that we “need to produce 50% more food to feed 9 billion people by 2050. But climate change could cut crop yields by more than 25%.” This sobering statement is the catalyst for Meal Plans, a new series of sculptures and drawings that act as food related artefacts from a potential future world. These pseudo-relics will be exhibited in Bristol in the Autumn, presented as the results of an imagined archaeological dig, excavated c2080. By presenting the future as the past, David aims to encourage us to reconsider current habits and imagine new approaches for navigating the global challenges ahead.

David’s interest in the future of food began in 2011 whilst resident at Allenheads Contemporary Arts in Northumberland. During an al-fresco discussion about the future of the village with members of the local community, the issue of food security was raised. A comment about eating the abundant midges stuck fast with David. What followed was the creation of a midge-subsisting future for Allenheads, complete with sculptural artefacts and scientific diagrams.

Since then, David has continued to make work that mixes traditional sculptural techniques such as woodwork and assemblage with baking and cooking. In other projects he has collaborated with an industrial robotics engineer to create Luddite wood carvings, walled up the entrances to galleries with bread and hosted remotely attended dinner parties. For this project, David hopes to explore fresh ways of combining analogue and digital methods to create artworks that act as fragments or relics from a potential future. 

There will be lots of opportunities to get involved along the way. David will host a programme of workshops and public talks over the next few months, kicking off this Friday, with a free Lunchtime Talk at Pervasive Media Studio.

We’re delighted to support David in the development of the work and to collaborate on production of our second food themed residency with partner At Bristol, following the success of Sabrina Shirazi’s OPUS Residency in 2016. Meal Plans is also made possible with the kind support of Arts Council of England.

To find out more and follow David’s progress, keep an eye on his project page and updates.

If you are interested in becoming Watershed's next Artist in Residence, have a look at our current open calls here.