FOOD AS EXPLOSIVE NON-EDIBLE ART
Las Vegas in the 21st century is gaining a global reputation for being a culinary universe. New restaurants are continually opening and celebrity chefs have made a powerful mark on the city. But now, the first gallery in the world to focus solely on food photography by a single artist just opened at the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace.
The Modernist Cuisine Gallery is the fortuitous creation introducing the groundbreaking works of photographer, chef, scientist and author Nathan Myrhvold. The eye-catching gallery sells limited edition prints of food photography taken by Myrhvold and found in the books he’s authored.
At the gallery you discover images capturing everything from one huge, gorgeous giant tomato or four giant blueberries to action shots like French fries caught in the path of a blast of suspended ketchup or wine glasses splashing red wine. With child-like wild abandon and forging a new genre in food photography nearly a decade ago, Myrhvold portrays food in unexpected ways all the while illustrating the science at work in cooking and ultimately fascinating and intriguing the viewer.
His first book “Modernist Cuisine: The Art & Science” in 2011 was the debut of Myrhvold’s new way of approaching and capturing food as a subject matter in a new creative unconventional fashion. Myhrvold and his Modernist Cuisine team have displayed incredible ingenuity just to capture a photo. They’ve actually cut cooking equipment and food in half, custom-built lenses to photograph ingredients under a microscope, and used or built robots for accomplishing focus stacking, dropping objects with precise timing, blasting condiments and sabering champagne bottles.
After another book “Modernist Cuisine at Home” and as fascination grew, he created a photo book, “The Photography of Modernist Cuisine,” and a food photography exhibit that traveled to museums around the country. The next book in Myhrvold’s amazing evolution of observing the culinary world differently is “Modernist Bread” coming out this fall.
Myhrvold pursued his lifelong passion for photography even while doing postdoctoral cosmology work with Stephen Hawking and working alongside Bill Gates as chief technology officer of Microsoft. After retiring, Myhrvold founded Intellectual Ventures to pursue his lifelong interests.
It was the demand for prints of the photos that led to the idea of the gallery. Myhrvold found Las Vegas appealing for both its culinary and retail clout. As he muses, “Where else can you find 10-foot-tall portraits of top chefs emblazoned on towering hotels…”
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