“Eating design” is not a phrase we toss around here on Co.Design regularly. Designing dining environments, yes. Designing food preparation accessories, yes. But Dutch eating designer Marije Vogelzang would argue those all fall within her preferred field of expertise, as they examine the curious interaction between our hands, our mouths, and our stomachs. Vogelzang’s projects combine the taste of strange (or familiar) ingredients, the camaraderie of the dinner table, and the showmanship of the culinary arts. In essence, she gets people to play with their food.
Vogelzang’s work has included projects as diverse as creating installations that explore the role of lettuce in culture, to making gun lollipops to show sugar’s effect on your body, to catering special dinners with utensils ranging from spatulas to forceps. As the proprietor of the Amsterdam cafe Proef, Vogelzang serves local meats alongside organic produce much like her fellow restauranteurs, but has a knack for preparing and presenting food that’s anything but traditional.
Call her an artist, call her a designer–just don’t call her a chef. Vogelzang’s work isn’t designing food, after all, it’s designing the experience around it. In a way, it’s the opposite of the fussy, over-processed molecular gastronomy movement that’s sweeping culinary culture. Vogelzang’s eating design is far more elemental, more engaging, and more entertaining.