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Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Ferran Adria - The Art of Cooking

Dead Beat has an interest in food. Always felt that cooking was an art form, in the way any part of our living experience can be elevated to an art form. So he is pleased to see that Spain's best known chef, Ferran Adria, has been invited to one of Europe's most influential art shows - The five-yearly Documenta art show in Kassel, Germany.

The chef, whose restaurant is near Barcelona, El Bulli, was recently voted the best in the world for the second time. He has created dishes such as codfish foam and spherical potato gnocchi with consommé of roasted potatoes

The invitation, however, has stuck in the throat of the Spanish art establishment, which condemned it as the "banalisation of art". One critic, Jose de la Sota, writing in the daily El Pais, said: "Adria is not Picasso. Picasso did not know how to cook but he was better than Adria [at art]. What is art now? Is it something or nothing?"

So Dead Beat calls up Ferran and asks for his response.

"I am up to my elbows in corn syrup Dead Beat, could you not call at a better time? True, I am no Picasso, but what is art in times like these? Many people act as if I should apologise for participating. I am not going to. I understand there might be people who are annoyed. It's tough to see a cook get invited to this. But what is art? If they want to call what I do art, fine. If not, that's fine too."

Dead Beat shrugs with Ferran, puts down the phone and reaches for a Pot Noodle.

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