Manifest Spotlight: Dan Schwarzlose

Published on Apr 13, 2015

For this interactive and multi-sensory performance, Dan Schwarzlose (MFA, Interdisciplinary Arts & Media, 2006) is collaborating with Chef Richard Farina (Executive Chef of Moto Restaurant and former Top Chef contestant) to recreate a river scene as the “plate” for a salmon course that they will serve to their guests.

Complete with river rocks, flavored wood chips, and a smoke gun that will heighten the olfactory sense and smoke the salmon, this performance will not only be delicious, but a great deal of fun. Both artists will be present to serve and interact with their guests. In addition to the salmon bite, Schwarzlose and Farina will also create and serve an edible paper that looks and tastes like a maki roll. 

What was your inspiration for this project?
During my MFA studies, I became very interested in creating multi sensory installations and performances. I also started collaborating with Chef Homaro Cantu from Moto Restaurant and designed an independent study with him while at Columbia. I learned how to create edible papers at Moto, using a wide array of flavors to allow people to eat edible photos and edible text on the papers I conceived. Edible paper and multi sensory art became the counterpoint of my graduating MFA thesis, Serving Synesthesia. I have always enjoyed creating various edible papers because it is so unique and people respond to it so positively.


Last year, I served pieces of poundcake along with a  poundcake flavored edible paper with text from poet Ezra Pound: Ezra Poundcake. This year, I want to elevate this concept with a more complicated offering that incorporates savory flavors rather than sweet: an edible paper that looks and tastes like a maki roll, along with a salmon maki that is served from a river scene. Chef Richard Farina is one of my favorite chefs and I have always wanted to collaborate with him on an artistic piece that we can take outside of the restaurant; I am thrilled to work with him for this year's TicToc Food Spot. 

What teachers have helped guide or assist you through your process thus far?
This piece was created independent of teachers, but my most influential teachers during my MFA studies (2002-2006) were Jeff Abell, Michael Piazza, Beth Berolzheimer and Suzanne Cohen-Lange.