"Fresh" and "funky" are words used to describe styles, aesthetics, music, art, and other contemporary creative productions. They are concepts primarily derived from cultures of food. "Fresh" is used to describe things that are new, not stale, unwilted and easy to consume - things that are, in effect, alive, almost, or recently dead. "Funky", on the other hand, responds to foods that are decomposed or decaying, making us furrow our brows and curl our upper lips. Musicians, of course, use the word "funky" in other ways. This workshop takes up investigations and experimentation of these two fundamental, even essential aesthetic categories through food and music, alimentation, and audition. With readings, media, arts, and culinary examples drawn from historic and contemporary social experiments and movements such as Afrofuturism, ruderal ecologies, and others, we will sketch together outlines of a culinary cosmopolitics that relates creative acts to survival, morality, the 'good life' and living well. With a particular focus on sonic experience, we examine and practice embodied experiences that immerse and envelope individuals, socialize, and cohere groups of humans and nonhumans in new rituals and ceremonies of ecological attachment.
Held in April 2023, artists, designers, students and food systems researchers came together at the Markthalle Basel in Switzerland for experimental, collective encounters. Here, the use of nomenclature for food and music were the starting point for exercises into the many other interplays of media, mastication and incorporation. The workshop featured guests like Dr. Kenza Benabderrazik (ETH Zürich Environmental Systems Science researcher, teacher and ecological curator whose work deals with tomato cultivation and supply chains), and sound artist Stas Shärifullin (a.k.a. HMOT) who's research deals with sound and decoloniality. These guests and intersections led to Morocco-to-Europe tomato supply chain discussions and contact microphone, hydrophone and ASMR experiments and recordings.