Design is a transversal language that is also expressed at the table

One of the values that Skema has always wanted to convey is that the choice of the floor is an interior design operation, yet it is not just taking a material to cover a surface, but it is a matter of choosing a functional and decorative element inside a general project.

The harmony between aesthetics and functionality is the goal to be achieved in all our furnishing projects.
This means having an overview and the ability to coordinate several elements together.

A golden rule that all style professionals apply in their work, whatever their scope.

To demonstrate this, we interviewed for you the Food Designer Valentina Pozzobon who introduced us to this particular and emerging profession where food becomes the protagonist of stories, imaginaries, social messages, style identities and philosophies of thought.

Valentina, first of all, what is food design?

Food design is food design, the professional in this sector knows food but is not a chef, often they are architects who "design" food, looking at its shape and its functionality, considering the context in which it will fit.
In food design, food is the starting point for a research that involves all the senses and must lead to a rationalized project that improves the experience of eating.

So we can consider the food designer as a designer, like an interior designer?

Exactly, it is not by chance that this relatively new discipline fits into a specific course of study at the Polytechnic School of Design in Milan.
The task of a food designer is to highlight all the experience that food transmits, often unconsciously.
In this area we work on three aspects related to food: the shape of the food, linked above all to its functional part, we think of the shape of pasta studied to best collect the sauce, or the size of a chocolate created at industrial level and studied to be eaten with a bite. Then, there is the study of packaging, which must be functional but also capable of transmitting the identity of the brand, or is focused on ecosustainable issues such as food waste or the protection of resources, primarily water.
Finally, the food designer also takes care of the experience of the act of eating and studies how to present food to the guests. In this case we talk about eating design and it is often applied to corporate events, institutional banquets or artistic and cultural events.

Is it correct to say that food is one of the greatest cultural expressions?

Food is culture. It contains a very strong symbolic component, both on a personal level and on a social level. This awareness has given rise to the role of the food designer to whom more and more companies turn to express specific messages through food and culinary events, which may be the identity of the company, the story of a company product, unto the artistic performance linked to a debate or to the awareness of the public on a specific theme.
After all, food is a material of ethical, aesthetic, religious and cultural discussion, it involves everyone in the discussion and allows us to get to know each other and create relationships.

We come to an issue very dear to Skema: the concept of mood. Does it exist in the world of food design? If so, how do you express it?

The food designer is a designer of style, in the product and in the context in which the product is integrated.
For this reason, one of the tools at the base of their projects is the mood board, useful for giving the first form of the idea and framing the experience that one wants to obtain. With the mood board you can understand what kind of feeling you want to give with that culinary experience and it allows you to see in a single overview the spaces where you will insert the dishes, the combinations of colors, the materials that will be used to decorate and create the frame of the event where the protagonist is always him: the food. The mood becomes a fact of consistency.
The materials from the table, the furniture, the way in which the dishes, flowers, lights and colors are served or arranged, everything is studied and coordinated.
On the basis of the event all the elements that must transmit the story through the senses of taste, sight, touch and smell, the experience that one wants to transmit, are determined.

The mood is the expression of a harmony, a representation of values and ideas.
What else characterizes your work?

Consistency and identity are the key words that move my projects. Everything starts from an a priori study of what the client wants, but also of the values ​​he bears, only if one is coherent with what the client expresses can bring to the table his message and, therefore, his identity.

Harmony is definitely a key factor, after all we recognize beauty in objects, in forms that have harmony. This is a rule that I respect when I choose the position of the various elements, the choice of colors, sizes and shapes to match with each other. There are the rules of the table setting that must be respected, a simple example is the height of the flowers at the table, that must be such as not to disturb the view between diners.
My choice often falls into essentiality, a few well-designed elements that help me to highlight the message and create the desired atmosphere. What matters is to maintain consistency between the message and its representation.

Harmony, food with a symbolic content, the act of eating as a representation of a cultural baggage. The food designer is a set designer of food, an architect of events and buffet, who can do what we were scolded when we were children: play with food.
But there is nothing improvised in this that is a real discipline where the rules of design apply to one of the most important aspects of life.
Our food designer has shown us once again how to decorate, furnish, think about a project that involves aesthetics and functionality, is a theme of great current affairs that involves more and more worlds.
Whether it is the table of an event or the renewal of living spaces, today the need to think of a global project where every element is coordinated is fundamental.

If you liked it, read also:

The interview with Franco Driusso


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