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During the various lockdowns, food became especially important and Instagram was flooded with images of people trying their hand at new recipes. It doesn’t seem to matter where you are in the world, people love taking pictures of their food. 

Project MotorHouse celebrated the delicious delights of summer in an exhibition called Camera Eats First. Under the watchful eye of photographer Tim Topple, our teenage photographers together with members of Newington Chill Club photographed people growing, selling, and enjoying food.

Food stylist Lynsey Fox showed the youths how to style a cook-along video and with videographer Dan Whitehead of Roar Video, they filmed a cook-along. Artist Chris Tipping collaborated with the young people to turn the material they’d created into a dazzling feast for the eyes. The venue was Silverland Studios on Ramsgate Harbour.

Chris used the young photographers’ images to create a trompe l’oeil banquet on table clothes covering 6 long picnic tables and this formed the main focus of the exhibition. Chris collaborated with Shelly Goldsmith, Reader in Textiles on the Fashion Textiles BA at UCA Rochester to create the 55m of cloth which was printed by Shelly and her students using dye-sublimation. The tablecloth was constructed from 21 separate pieces of printed cloth & sewn together by Shelly.

Framed photographs by the young photographers lined the right-hand wall together with the video cook along. Two of the lads created a colourful fruit and veg market stall installation of the left-hand wall.

Chris used the photographs to design 20 glazed bone china dinner plates for the back wall. Each of the participating youths were allowed to keep their plate. We distributed recipe cards from Newington Food Club and Our Kitchen who collaborated with us on the project. 



Our thanks to Arts Council and Gibbons Family Trust for making this project possible.