By this time, I think it has become pretty clear that I’m a bit of a sushi fanatic. I really dig the stuff… to the degree where I spend a great deal of my day blogging about it to an audience which may or may not even exist. I suppose that’s saying something about my life (or lack thereof), but hey, we’ve all got our jobs to do. This one is mine.
Anyhow, sushi. Yeah, I’m a fan. And as much as I enjoy relishing the experience of a sushi meal, it’s not just the cuisine itself that fascinates me. Fish and rice aside, the culture(s) of sushi is, in itself, a marvelously captivating subject, and in my view, one which is particularly interesting when examined through the lens of sustainability.
There is no singular sushi culture. The cuisine has been interpreted in a myriad of ways, each with its own proprietary traditions and norms. From “traditional” edomae sushi culture in Japan to the futuristic conveyor-belt hamachi and unagi delivery systems employed in urban centers around the globe, the concept of sushi has mutated and transcended itself in countless ways.
One of the most interesting aspects of the diffusion of sushi into global popular culture is the emergence of “sushi art.” Dozens, maybe hundreds, of spectacularly talented artists have begun to incorporate sushi into their work. Mediums as varied as concrete sculpture, watercolors, and even discarded plastic have been used by these visionaries to evoke images of sashimi, maki, and more.
This upcoming series of blog entries will be an exploration of the use of sushi as an artistic theme, and will focus on how this artwork can be interpreted from an environmental perspective. It is meant to provoke a discussion on these themes, so please, comment freely.
Links to subsequent installments:
Part 1: Fish, Life, and Gayle Wheatley (May 2, 2009)
Part 2: The Plastic World of Alicia Escott (June 2, 2009)