As art becomes more strange and confrontational—from provocative performance pieces to conceptual musk sculptures—the last great untapped medium is the edible one. But is all food-art also art-art?
Edible Fruit Bouquets: These ornate melon slices, pineapple blossoms and adhesive-pectin kiwi clumps can make every Tuesday feel like Bosses Need Appreciation Too! Day.
But is it food-art? Yes. Beyond an effective simulacrum of beautiful but often fatally allergenic flowers, fruit arrangers use composition, fragrance blending, and strategic "dewing" to create a feast for the eyes, as well as the eyes of the stomach.
Cheese Cubes Carved into Tiny Presidential Busts: Self-explanatory, self-inspiring.
But is it food-art? No. Though objectively beautiful works of craftsmanship, presidential cheese mini busts are intended as historical classroom aids, emergency cracker toppings or last-resort distractions to pacify any neighborhood dogs who may be chasing you and your satchel full of Vermont-cheddar Zachary Taylors and "Monterey Jacksons."
Christmas Trees: With limited room for argument, neither food nor art.
But is it food-art? Ironically, yes. Although a Christmas tree is artfully decorated and technically composed of plant matter, no one has ever eaten an entire one due to the scientific probability of this becoming the most popular video on YouTube. However, due to a sweetheart deal between the FDA and "Big Pine," Christmas trees receive tax exemptions designed to support the humanities, and are featured on all official renditions of the food art pyramid.