The Heritage Society, and Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) Folklife + Civic Engagement presents the exhibition Food & Family: A Houston Journey on view September 28, 2017 through January 27, 2018.
Houston has become known as a food mecca, but its roots/routes are drawn directly from its diverse communities.
Food & Family will explore the supporting role that each of these domains – food and family – plays in enhancing the significance of the other. After all, family is the elemental unit of human social life and food is the essential component of not just its survival, but its capacity to thrive.
Instead of examining the scientific aspects of this synergy, however, Food & Family will sample several of its many cultural manifestations in the diverse communities that make-up greater Houston.
As such, Food & Family will be a journey with many stops along the way. By looking at the craft, the traditional artistry, the beliefs and the stories associated with family foodways, the exhibition will travel from the home kitchen, to family-based farms, to multi-generational restaurants, entrepreneurs, grocers and distributors.
The exhibition will also visit the role food and family play in holidays.
Focusing on New Year’s commemorations based in Houston but originating in Thailand, India, Judaism, and the American South, Food & Family will reflect on the aesthetic and symbolic character of food in the household and in family religious practice.
Food & Family will involve artifacts, historic and contemporary photographs, as well as audio and video installations.
An accompanying publication will celebrate the domestic thread that binds food and family.
A series of public programs, including The Edible Museum and Food & Family in the Community, will be organized and presented for free over the course of the exhibition’s run.
Food & Family is funded in part by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Houston Endowment and the City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance.
Image: courtesy of HAA Folklife Program.