Massachusetts College of Art and Design

Panel Discussion // Creating Common Good: Food as Fulcrum

Wednesday, November 20, 2019 7:00pm to 8:30pm

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QUESTION: What do artists and chefs have in common?
The desire to nourish.

This shared desire is what inspired the theme for MassArt’s 5th Alumni Biennial Exhibition, and exemplifies our mission to prepare students and alumni to shape communities, economies, and cultures for the common good, wherever their paths may lead them. Join us as MassArt President David Nelson dives deeper into this conversation with artists and entrepreneurs who are creating positive change and fostering generosity through the medium of food.

Afterwards, linger at the table for some inspired discussions and a chance to learn about how current MassArt students are creating their own social impact right here on campus. The 5th Biennial Alumni Exhibition “Nourish” will also be on view in the Patricia Doran Gallery.

And since sharing is caring – we will also be accepting donations for The Shelf, MassArt's food pantry. Please consider bringing in any non-perishable items or toiletries to help support our food-insecure students!

Space is limited - please RSVP!

Limited parking will be available in MassArt's Ward Street Lot.



Jody Adams // Chef and Co-owner of TRADE, Porto, and Saloniki restaurants

Jody Adams is a two-times James Beard award-winning chef based in Boston, with a national reputation for her acclaimed restaurants Rialto and TRADE. She has also collaborated with her husband Ken Rivard on the successful blog, The Garum Factory, a colorful weekly narrative of recipes for the home cook, illustrated with Ken’s photographs, and recently served as a juror for MassArt’s 5th Alumni Biennial Exhibition "Nourish.”

Adams has a strong commitment to hunger relief and is known for her loyal support of the Greater Boston Food Bank and Share Our Strength, who awarded her the Humanitarian of the Year Award in 2010. She serves as board member to Partners In Health, Island Creek Oysters Foundation and is a member of the Nutrition Round Table at the Harvard School of Public Health.


Toni Elka // Founder and Executive Director, Future Chefs

Toni Elka founded Future Chefs in 2008. An alumna of MassArt with 20 years of experience in the youth development field, she is a serial innovator and committed social change agent. She received national recognition for her innovative leadership (Mass. Statewide Peer Leadership Institute) and founded the Circle of Girls program prior to Future Chefs. As the granddaughter of a union organizer and farmer and holding jobs as a cook and caterer, her passion for the culinary arts fueled her sense of excitement about directing a career program that addresses the needs of youth who might find fulfillment in this creative, hands-on field. In 2013 she received a Boston Neighborhood Fellows Award from the Philanthropic Institute and serves on the boards of Boston Day and Evening Academy and The Boston Private Industry Council. In May of 2015, Ms. Elka received an Honorary Doctor of Letters degree from Newbury College.


Tuyen Bui-Lally // Design Educator and Creator, Juste Tutu

Tuyen Bui-Lally is a French-Vietnamese communicator, design educator and entrepreneur passionate about food, technology and intercultural identity. She loves sharing her experiences and ideas with others to help inspire hospitality, conviviality + creativity.

She holds degrees in both International Business Communication from CELSA Paris IV La Sorbonne, and a Master of Fine Arts in Design from the Dynamic Media Institute at Massachusetts College of Art + Design.

Tuyen is currently teaching a Color Design Workshop at Lesley University and is nurturing her new venture called Juste Tutu curating events showcasing multicultural food experiences by gathering people around ephemeral and convivial shared moments.


Hannah Clark (with Brendan Kenny & Josephine Wermuth) // The Dinner Table Project (a MassArt Student Group)

The Dinner Table Project began in the fall of 2018 by Hannah Clark as a response to the food crisis in Boston, while Hannah was still a student at MassArt. The project addresses student food insecurities, the politics of agriculture and the validity of functional craft. An invitation went out to makers and craftspeople across the college for table linens, serving dishes, plates, bowls, cups and spoons all to live in a handmade table made from fallen pine trees in MA. A collective of makers then doubled as kitchen cooks, preparing a meal with donated produce from FairFoods and dry goods from The Shelf, MassArt’s food pantry. Collaboratively the artists created an evening of nourishment.

The Dinner Table Project fed over 70 students at its first dinner. Each guest washed their dishes and reset them on the table so that new spaces are always available. There is always another seat at the table. The collective hosts dinners once a semester and invites students campus-wide to help prep, cook, serve and share a meal together. The project has traveled to the Art Complex Museum in Duxbury, MA and is stored on campus. The Dinner table project is a space for makers by makers. Activism does not start and stop in our studios, it spills out into our cups and bowls.

Since leaving Mass Art, Hannah has been working as a Butcher's apprentice at Savenor’s Butcher and Market in Cambridge. She has been learning the craft of whole-animal butchery from master butchers, with a commitment to reducing waste, utilizing and honoring the entire animal and working in collaboration with small farms across Massachusetts to bring locally sourced sustainable meat to Boston. Her practice continues to transform as an artist, igniting conversation and solution to the current language of food in American agriculture through performances of nourishment.


Image courtesy of Future Chefs. Photo by Isometric Studio.

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