Nine Days Cooking on $90,000 Budget Draw Performa ArtistKatya Kazakina
Gupta, who turned his love of food into paintings of shiny pots and pans, will spend nine days preparing traditional Indian fare at the Old Bowery Station, a downtown chef incubator.
“I will cook very common food that you don’t find in a hotel or a restaurant,” said Gupta, 49, in a telephone interview from his home in New Delhi. “You find this kind of food in your mother’s home.”
The artist’s paintings have sold at auction for as much as $1.4 million. His giant skull made from stackable stainless-steel containers has been exhibited by billionaire Francois Pinault’s Palazzo Grassi in Venice.
Titled “Celebration,” Gupta’s project has a budget of $90,000 and is one of 13 Performa commissions ranging from a play staged in a bath house to a concert featuring singers on bikes.
“Leonardo da Vinci did performance art and so did Caravaggio,” said RoseLee Goldberg, Performa’s founder. “Most people don’t recognize this history.”
Goldberg raised $2.5 million for this fifth edition of Performa, which includes more than 100 artists and 48 venues, ranging from the Brooklyn Academy of Music to a tiny East Village theater housed in a school for girls from low-income families.
Artist Rashid Johnson, known for his conceptual painting and sculpture, will direct LeRoi Jones’s play “Dutchman” at the Russian & Turkish Baths.
Norwegian Tori Wranes, who works with voice and sculpture, is presenting an event in which a choir of as many 50 people performs while riding bikes.
Gupta has shipped hundreds of shiny pots and pans from New Delhi to New York to build a chandelier-like installation at the Old Bowery Station. In the past two years he’s been painting food he’s eaten -- including the leftovers.
“It’s like writing a diary,” he said. “You are what you eat.”