Fermentation 01 — Los Angeles, California

Date: 2019
Status: Complete
Category: Cultural, Exhibition
Team: Chris Leong, Dominic Leong, Gabriel Burkett, Laura Veit, Don Chen
Collaborators: Quarra Stone
Press: T Magazine

Fermentation 01 is a “technology of the self,” a concept used by Michel Foucault to describe technologies, which as he writes, “…permit individuals to effect by their own means or with the help of others a certain number of operations on their own bodies and souls, thoughts, conduct, and way of being, so as to transform themselves in order to attain a certain state of happiness, purity, wisdom, perfection, or immortality.”

A series of three self-similar vessels, the work is considered a prototype to explore the ancient practice of fermentation that as it rebalances the biodiversity of our internal microbiomes, is both a ritual of self-care and set towards human optimization. Placed around an outdoor hearth, the stone vessels constitute a four-month culinary experiment done in collaboration with fermentation experts Jessica Wang and Ai Fujimoto, culminating in a tasting of three unique recipes: Warm L.A. Sweet (Amakuchi) Miso, Sunny L.A. HISHIO (chunky soy sauce), and Salt Cured Citrus. Fermentation 01 questions the domestic tropes of clean vs. dirty, inside vs. outside, probiotic vs. antibiotic, and sculpture vs. tool.