|Discourse on Courses
Natalie Schmidt Dotzauer
June 5 – 29, 2008
First Thursday, June 5, 2008
Artist will be in attendance the first and final Saturdays of the month.
Jell-O molds, meatloaf, and twice-baked potatoes are a few of the basic potluck food groups that adorn Natalie Schmidt Dotzauer’s wallpaper installation this month at Punch. For Schmidt Dotzauer, these iconic and savory food staples reveal a rich and layered symbolism, interpreting the potluck as abundance, as waste, as excess in a world with hunger, but also as culture and community. She looks at how food and service create power struggles, develop guilt, and form an unhealthy habit of gaining purpose through food preparation.
“I learned to set the table before I could ride a bike. I learned that the knife blade should always point toward the plate, that the napkin should be folded so as to open in one shake, and dessert would follow each meal. I ate hamburgers in the summer; strawberries in June; deviled eggs around Easter with hot crossed buns; and in December, indulged on morsels reserved for ushering in the Holidays. Growing up with a “fellowship hour” meant eating out of duty, a styrofoam cup between you and uncomfortable silence. It seems we eat for a variety of reasons including acceptance. Food has been the timekeeper and the taskmaster; its role in life has preserved and dictated a certain socialness. I am drawn towards the roll of hostess and repelled by its serving nature. If there is a twelve-step program to shake sacrifice through service I should probably be in it.” –N. Schmidt Dotzauer
Natalie Schmidt Dotzauer received her MFA at The California College of Art and now lives in Thorp, Washington, where she was this year’s Thorp Chili Cook-off third place champion. When she is not pulling together impromptu snack plates, she spends much of her time honing her baked recipes in preparation for the home bakery she hopes to open in downtown Thorp, slated for May 2009. She was a 2006 Artist Trust Gap grant recipient and has been featured in such publications as Artweek. Natalie has recently received a full scholarship to the Penland School of Craft’s summer program in wallpaper design.
June Hours: Noon-5pm Friday-Sunday,
or by appointment.