Tasting Home


single channel video + monitor + headphones + quilt made from tarps + lobster bibs + synthetic batting + thread + grommets

Tasting Home comprises a video work and a quilt made from functional materials typical of coastal maritime towns including camo tarps and lobster bibs. The work explores the way that regional character can be shaped and influenced by tourism and where, amid the performance of this character, culture finds a place to anchor itself. Lobster, which first gained popularity because of its abundance, has adopted a grand mythology in New Brunswick and other parts of the east coast—epitomized by the “World’s Largest Lobster” by Winston Bronnum that can be found in Shediac, New Brunswick. If travelling to New Brunswick is a pilgrimage, the lobster feast is a rite of the highest order.

The glorification of the lobster has given rise to swaths of crustacean-kitsch ranging from t-shirts to accoutrement with which to consume them. Across the world, food is innately tied to culture and so, when tourists arrive in search of new encounters to measure their lives against, they long for the local’s experience. The culture in demand is therefore supplied, often resulting in a veneer of artificial authenticity that, built up over generations, becomes polished and impenetrable. This shell impedes access for locals and complicates their relationship to community identity as what was once theirs has grown and molted into something for vacationers.

As the artist sits on the beach and enjoys a lobster feast to herself, without a community, viewers are invited to consider the messy relationship between private and public life, humility and humiliation, and the authenticity and kitsch that has made the east coast the tourism mecca that it has become.”

Excerpt by Christiana Myers from Roadside Attraction Exhibition Catalogue

This work was produced for Roadside Attraction (2021), a group exhibition comprised of maritime artists exploring cultural relationships to touism in New Brunswick. “Tasting Home” has also exhibited as part of the exhibition Seafaring, at the Molly Kool Heritage Centre, in Alma, NB, July 2022.

1 min Sample of Tasting Home (2021) from Hailey Guzik on Vimeo.