About The Virtual Chef

food in the physical and networked world

The Virtual Chef Project includes :

- Events - interactive cooking and eating events that can be joined virtually throughout the world through the internet

- Research - live investigative projects exploring edibles of all kinds, streamed live as internet TV to global audience

- Edibles - the invention of new food-as-art and art-as-food, through research and collaborations

Virtual Chef - Black Sea - our event this past summer in Sinop, Turkey

Virtual Chef is a project of Caravansarai and Julie Upmeyer

Conceptual Premise

In the physical world: Food

Food is universal and commonplace, though ultimately quite personal. Eating is the closest connection our body has to the outside world.

How are contemporary attitudes towards food affected by:

Tradition / memory … marketing / word-of-mouth … nationalism / globalism / individualism

The preparation, creation and distribution methods of food are always changing. The availability of ingredients, new innovations, imports / exports and migration all contribute to this change, as well as our attitudes. Food is a tool for communication, a gift, a cultural difference and a similarity.

In the virtual world: Technology

How can one have an intimate experience through the internet, not in the sense of escaping to a virtual world, but in having a significant connection with an individual in a distant location?

Internet technologies such as Skype, live internet TV and other connective software allow two parties to interact (through audio and video). This eliminates expensive and often impossible physical travel, but does not solve the ongoing problems of facilitating exchange and dialogue. Virtual Chef explores these virtual communications artistically, creating a shared experience.