Artist's Palate: John Baldessari's polenta, spinach, eggs and bacon
John Baldessari has long incorporated elements of consumption into his work. Sometimes this has manifested itself in a figurative sense, such as his early 1967 piece A Two-Dimensional Surface Without Any Articulation Is A Dead Experience, in which he allowed his words to be painted by sign-painters. Sometimes the artist has approached the idea in a literal way – perhaps best exemplified by his Cremation Project, in which he burnt all his paintings from 1953 to 1966 and baked the ashes into cookies, which were displayed with a recipe. This provocative display of metarealistic gastronomy has been toned down in Baldessari’s contribution to the Wallpaper* dining digest. His recipe is a homey amalgam of familiar tastes and textures, proving once again that, even at 85, Baldessari still has a few tricks up his sleeve.
3 tbs olive oil
2 rashers of bacon
2 large handfuls of fresh spinach
A wedge of pre-cooked polenta
Heat a medium-sized, non-stick skillet over a medium flame. Add olive oil, and fry bacon till crisp. Set aside on kitchen paper. Next, using the same oil, fry the eggs till cooked to desired consistency. Meanwhile, in a medium-sized pot of boiling, salted water, cook spinach till just tender for a scant minute. Season to taste, and assemble.
As originally featured in the December issue of Wallpaper* (W*213)