Curatorial Projects > Califas (2013)

Andrea Blum
Santa Cruz Homeless Garden Project (key), 2013
Digital C-print
In collaboration with UAV pilot/photographer Kenny Blum

1) Shelly Fryer, Shelley's Biscotti, Santa Cruz. Handmade biscotti baked from scratch, enlivened with fresh ground aromatic spices and house-roasted nuts. Made with locally milled flours.

2) Eden Israel, Voss Gardens, artisan salads grown in the Santa Cruz Mountains, Boulder Creek. “Our approach allows the land to show us what it grows best and to enhance that process. We are developing our own seed strains to thrive here, simply by letting them go and come back stronger.”

3) Melinda Harrower, Melinda's Gluten Free, Santa Cruz. Artisan baker of gluten free foods. “I have been an avid baker since my grandma brought me into her kitchen when I was young. She taught me traditional Armenian recipes, as well as how to play with food to create amazing things.”

4) Kelly Dearie & Kris Stromberg, Creative Cultures, Santa Cruz. Dearie, a chef who helped heal her husband from two serious diseases deemed incurable by Stanford doctors, created the recipes for her probiotic, fermented drinks.

5) Kate Appel, 3 of a kind, Seaside. Born in Thailand, Appel makes handmade sparkling fruit drinks based with three main ingredients: fruit juices, natural sweeteners, and herbs. “A couple years ago, my 6 years old triplets tasted their first soda ever at a friend’s birthday party. A tongue biting drink is how they described the root beer that was at the party. I soon realized I wanted to create a better carbonated drink with all natural ingredients.”

6) Kendra Baker, The Penny Ice Creamery, Santa Cruz. The only ice cream shop in Santa Cruz making small batches of ice cream completely from scratch.

7) Mickail Murawski, assistant brewer, Alec Stefansky, brewer, Uncommon Brewers, Santa Cruz. “I set out to brew uncommon beers because there were so few others trying to bridge what I saw as an obvious gap between brewing and culinary traditions.”

8) Chris LaVeque, El Salchichero, Santa Cruz, artisan butcher. Uses pasture-raised animals from local ranches making hand-cut meats, house-made pates, fresh & smoked sausages, and assorted smoked & cured meats.

9) Kristen Cederquist, Serendipity Saucy Spreads. The company began as a collaborative effort of two Santa Cruz entrepreneurs, Kristen & Lynette Cederquist, who have a passion for creating jams, jellies, and preserves.

10) Nicole Todd. Santa Cruz Cider.

11) Emily & Nicole Thomas, Santa Cruz Mountain Brewing. Organic microbrews and sustainable brewing practices.

12) Zachary Davis, The Penny Ice Creamery, Santa Cruz. The only ice cream shop in Santa Cruz making small batches of ice cream completely from scratch.

13) Mark Primack, Homeless Garden Project Board Member, Santa Cruz. HGP Provides job training, transitional employment, and support services to people who are homeless.

14) Denise Arasin & Francis Gitzen, Homeless Garden Project volunteers.

15) Naomi Woldemar, Cardamom Tuesday and Silk Road Elixirs, Santa Cruz. Silk Road Elixirs are handmade, cardamom based mixers that can be used in cocktails, sodas, steamers, and desserts.

16) Anne Sexton, Homeless Garden Project volunteer.

17) Donald Lessard, Homeless Garden Project employee.

My American Pantry (MAP) is a photographic atlas celebrating and interpreting the micro-food and drink craft culture emerging in the United States. The photo project is traveling state by state documenting craftspeople, farmers, and their stories as well as the culinary ethos that defines particular geographical areas—sometimes drawing on traditions, family ties, or the affordances of climate and terroir (the taste of place) and other times emerging from new social trends and innovation. There is a zeitgeist of creativity around American food and MAP is out to document and share it. The craftspeople and farmers in these photographs are part of entrepreneurial phenomena that is blossoming in California and characterizes the intricate layers that define geographic expressions of American food.

The MAP project started in January 2013 in Northern California when we took the first aerial images of a group of artisans using a remote control camera mounted on an unmanned aerial vehicle. These photos capture compositions of Californians’ from different backgrounds and ethnicities that create an astounding array of artisan food and drink. The project is now going national, traveling around the country with the intention of collecting images and stories from every state and creating a complete map and tapestry of American food and drink culture. MAP is not just about collecting images but also about collecting stories from small corners of the country and creating social connections to help these small businesses thrive in the marketplace. The map created will become interactive for viewers to discover and taste the food and drink being crafted around the country and help define an emerging American pantry specific to its geography.” – Andrea Blum


October 2 – December 21, 2013
Intersection for the Arts
San Francisco, CA