Accepted Paper:

Visual presentations of food ideology  


Yrsa Lindqvist (The Society of Swedish Literature in Finland)

Paper short abstract:

Nordic Food is not only about gourmet restaurants. The trend in society shows an awaken interest towards preindustrial housekeeping. We are encouraged to grow vegetables and to pick wild berries. Shaping purity, authenticity and locality is central when visually presenting this food ideology.

Paper long abstract:

Picture a cookery book or a booklet with recipes from 1913. It is all about written descriptions and it is up to the reader to imagine how the dish will end up, if trying to prepare it. In the twentieth century however, the importance of visual interpretation increased at a steady rate. Today visual communication is a major part of daily life, often appealing to emotions in being narrative in a more abstract manner. When it comes to presenting food, we have moved on from presenting the actual products or the final result, to visualizing moods, milieus and generally wellbeing. In a picture of a cow, or of a sunset in the archipelago, we read in a story about roots, traditions and locality.

In the North nature is a natural part of our cultural tradition and it is imaginary connected to a vision of an unspoiled environment and therefore a better life. Scandinavian and Finnish design is known for tastefulness, simplicity - we are raised in a "less is more" concept that also is reflected in visual expressions. I intend to look at how the visual communication is used in the context local food connected to nature, roots and heritage. How is food with this kind of ideology presented?

Panel P13
Food styles: circulating creative stories of local food culture