Effects of Gourmandism on Sociability
59: Gourmandism is one of the most important influences in our social life: it gradually spreads that spirit of conviviality which brings together from day to day differing kinds of people, melts them into a whole, animates their conversation, and softens the sharp corners of conventional inequalities of position and breeding.
General Rule. Any type of preparation that springs from a high intelligence demands explicit praise, and a tactful expression of appreciation must always be made whenever it is plain that there is any attempt to please.
Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin 1825
Clages gallery is pleased to present Sauce Américaine by Jay Batlle. This is Batlle’s debut show in Cologne and presents a new group of paintings in sac à jambon bags shown for the first time in Germany.
The Sac À Jambon works continue with Batlle’s epicurean paintings, drawings, and sculptures taking the habits of the gourmet as a source of inspiration and social commentary. These works are a new chapter in a larger project titled The Stationery Series, which came out of Batlle’s experiences as a chef and Maitre d’ at restaurants in New York and Paris.
Sauce Américaine is a recipe from classic French cookery. As with many other classic dishes the original recipe has been adapted over time and almost every chef will prepare the sauce in a slightly different way. Modern recipes usually include tarragon, lobster stock rather than pounded lobster, and often replace cayenne pepper with paprika.
Batlle belongs to a generation of American artists who have responded to the precepts of minimalism and conceptualism. These artists aim to recreate the image and the social process in art, providing a channel for imaginary and everyday experience and forcing academic conventions to confront mass culture. The artist asks: What is the true meaning of art, getting to the top of the social economic ladder or having enough to eat?
Batlle (Syracuse, NY 1976) has a BA from UCLA and a fellowship from de Ateliers, Amsterdam. His work has been exhibited in galleries and museums in the U.S., Dubai, and Europe.