Six Smashing Food Exhibits: No Tickets, Shoes, or Shirts Required

by Emily Contois

Exploring virtual food exhibitsOne of my favorite things on a weekend afternoon, a weekday evening—well, we can go ahead and say just about anytime—is to spend a few glorious hours of levity and escape at a museum. I’m lucky to live in Boston where world-class museums abound as plentifully as colleges and universities, but sometimes, I hear you, we get busy and don’t make it out the door to enjoy the many intriguing exhibits on display. Here you’ll find six smashing online food museum exhibits that you can visit anytime you like from your computer—and in your pajamas if you so desire. There are likely many more delightful virtual expos, but these six, listed in no particular order, can be a very filling place to start…

  1. Julia Child’s Kitchen: Even if you aren’t in Washington D.C. you can peek in the drawers and cupboards of Julia Child’s kitchen, view selected culinary objects, and peruse an interactive timeline that chronicles her love with cooking. Exhibit by the Smithsonian, National Museum of American History.
  2. War-Era Food Posters: Check out dozens of posters from during and between the World Wars with food-focused messages, such as “Eat more cottage cheese,” “Every garden a munition plant,” and “Have you eaten your pound of potatoes today?” Exhibit by Cory Bernat from the Collection of the National Agricultural Library.
  3. What’s Cooking Uncle Sam? Trace the Government’s effect on how Americans eat, exploring the farm, factory, kitchen, and table. Exhibit by the National Archives.
  4. counter space: design + the modern kitchen: Explore the twentieth-century kitchen as a nexus of technology, design, culture, and aesthetics. Exhibit by the Museum of Modern Art.
  5. Key Ingredients: America by Food: Emphasizing regional traditions and international influences, this exhibit takes you coast to coast through 500 years of food in America. Exhibit by the Smithsonian Institute.
  6. Chosen Food: Click through this online exhibit dedicated to American Jewish identity, cuisine, and culture. Exhibit by the Jewish Museum of Maryland.

Emily is a current gastronomy student and graduate assistant, editing the Gastronomy at BU blog, January-August, 2012. Check out her research in food studies, nutrition, and public health on her blog, emilycontois.com

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