LAGOS is a port city, the most populous in nigeria and one of the fastest-growing cities in the world. it’s where i was a child, learning and living all the things that my adult heart now remembers as nostalgia. FROM LAGOS is my attempt in using food to remember where I came from and then use this memory as a lens through which to interrogate systems of power— underlain is the assumption that power is almost always exploitative.
FROM LAGOS, began as my reaction to the dominant/ contemporary food culture which conflates the enjoyment of food with its abstraction. growing up in nigeria, food was described with simple and frank adjectives. it was "good," "tasty," “sweet” (meaning delicious not not sugar laden) or "bad" but bad meals were a rarity.
my work has evolved from this limited critique of contemporary food culture to a wider examination of the systems that center whiteness, in all it’s global, economic, political and gendered ramifications, with food as my lens.
it is no longer enough to speak about what's on the plate all the while ignoring the socio-political moments leading up to the first bite. we deserve food that provides more than superficial context to the world around us.
omo see oyinbo sha
saartj: a project highlighting racial wealth disparity by offering race-based tiered pricing to customers. website. press.
hxt chicken shxt: how do you end gentrification? make housing affordable. a project to sell hot chicken at extortionist prices to fund a community land trust in black neighborhoods. website. press.
marriage trumps all: a dinner series to spark romantic connections between u.s. citizens and immigrants. website. press.
blackness in america: exploring race from the perspective of black folks, over fine food and drink. website. press.
babysauce: how do we lower black infant mortality rates? by shifting economic power to black women. we are developing a line of baby (and adult) food products for sale. net proceeds will fund work led by black women to lower black infant death. website coming soon.
Tunde Wey is a Nigerian-born, New Orleans-based artist, chef and writer who uses food and dining spaces to interrogate structures of power. Wey has been featured in The New York Times, NPR, GQ, The Washington Post, VOGUE, Black Enterprise, Food and Wine, and his writing has appeared in the Oxford American, Boston Globe, and San Francisco Chronicle. After almost a decade of undocumented living, he recently received U.S. permanent resident status and now, just like the honey badger he doesn’t really give a shit :)
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