What did Alchemy Artists Residency — an Ontario-based international artist-run residency founded in 2015 — committed to community engagement through the sharing of art and food do when neither gathering nor sharing space is an option?
In 2020 and returning in 2021, with the inability to offer traditional programming due to COVID 19, Alchemy artists and coordinators Claire Tallarico and Tonia Di Risio created a twice-weekly respite for Hillier farm and vineyard workers, mostly from outside of Canada, from having to shop, prepare their food, and clean up after a long day in the fields.These 600 plus meals were made in appreciation for hard work during a stressful Harvest Season.
Table Settings is designed as a small contribution to the well-being of vineyard and farm workers in uncertain times. The project contributes to the local economy as all produce and protein for Table Settings is purchased from small local farmer, growers and makers. Meals are prepared in a generously donated kitchen at Closson Chase Vineyards.
The Storehouse Food Bank, with financial support from the Prince Edward County Foundation, is the charitable partner and community advisor for the project.
As part of their respective artistic practices, Claire and Tonia are both intent on the growing, making, preserving, and sharing of food. They believe in the positive social impact that the sharing of food can have on individuals and communities. Together and individually, these artists and others cook, document and share how Table Settings contributes to their respective creative practices.