Last year I started a project called Dear Grandma, a collection of recipes from people all over the world. I had first asked my grandmothers for recipes from their childhood and then extended the project out to anyone who wanted to contribute. This project led me to envision Dear Grandma | Denmark, which developed from an interest in my family’s food history. As the granddaughter of Danish and German immigrants I have always been curious about the traditions and foods of my ancestors’.
In May, I had the opportunity to be an artist in residence at Guldagergaard - International Ceramic Research Center. I lived in the small town of Skælskør, Denmark it is located on the west side of the island Zealand not far from Copenhagen. While in Denmark I was able to visit the towns and churches where my ancestors had lived. My G.G. Grandmother Christine Hansen was from Mullerup and attend Drøsselbjerg Kirke (Church) and my G.G. Grandpa Hans Hansen came from Neder Vindinge and attended Kastrup Kirke (Church). Conveniently, both of these towns were within an hour of the town I was staying and I was able to visit. What an amazing experience to walk across the same land that my ancestors did so many years before.
My main goal with the residency was to learn about Danish food, culture, and traditions surrounding the meal and I did just that! I shared meals, cooked, and collected recipes from many kind Danes. I based my work on these experiences and used recipes to develop a set of serving vessels. These food specific dishes allowed me to bring the recipes into form. Although I was short on time since the residency was only one month, I was able to organize a meal that brought together all the people who had helped me to come and eat with the international community of artist at Guldageraard. After the meal the dishes were give to the people who contributed to the development of the project.
The meal included:
frikadeller | danish pork meatball
stegt flæsk | thick fried bacon
served with potatoes and persillesovs | parsley sause
æblekage | apple cake
hasselnød kage | hazelnut cake
lagkage | layerd birthday cake
kringle | prezel shaped pastry
rugbrod | Rye bread
rabarbergrød | rhubarb porridge with cream
My plan for the future life of this project is to revisit some of the vessels that I developed through this project. Thank you to everyone who made this project possible. To those who showed me so much kindness and generosity, I really appreciate you.
The final meal at Guldagergaard - International Ceramic Research Center, Denmark
A few of the dishes and food that I made for the meal.
Studio shot: gravy boats
Making Rugbrød a Danish rye bread with Bodil.
Traditional Danish smørrebørd, open faced sandwiches.
Bodil and I at her home in the Danish country side.
Royal Copenhagen china collection at the Grimmerhus Museum of Ceramic Art in Middelfart.
Nina Hole Fire Sculpture
Christine Hansen | Drøsselbjerg Kirke
Visit to The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts on the Island of Bornholm.
Making Frikadeller, Danish pork meatball.
Making Æbleskiver with Sten.
Researching Danish cookbooks.
Friends:::: Caroline & Eszti
A big thank you to these lovely ladies!