Thursday, July 22, 2010

The Art of Spilling Wine

Let’s hear it for Restaurant Week! For those of us stuck in the city during the summer, it’s a great opportunity to eat a three-course meal at a normally unaffordable restaurant, for a reasonable fixed price. Bar Boulud was especially delightful yesterday, as it also provided meat-locker like temps on what was a sweltering day in NYC.

Now, about those wine stains hanging on the wall. No, your waiter doesn’t cut up the tablecloth and hang it on the wall after each accident, to humiliate whoever knocked over the glass. The framed pieces are actually “art” by the brilliantly inventive Vik Muniz. The Brazilian-born artist explores perception, representation, and convention by using such unconventional materials as chocolate syrup, thread, and granulated sugar. Food & Wine describes the Muniz-Boulud collaboration and the "costly spills" here. For fun I've included the average per-bottle prices of the spills I have. And here I thought oil painting was expensive!

Watch Muniz talk about his work at TED from 2003, at the end of this post. I am especially partial to the cloud rendered in skywriting.

Gaja, Sori San Lorenzo 1989
$432 per bottle

Domaine De La Romanée-Conti, Romanée-Conti 1964
$8542 per bottle

Dugat-Py, Charmes-Chambertin 1999
$436 per bottle

Domaine René Engel, Clos-Vougeot 1985
$380 per bottle

E. Guigal, Côte-Rôtie “La Turque” 1991
$640 per bottle

All prices are averages from

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