Epi.Curio is a digital collection of images and recipes – openly available and accessible to stimulate engagement with heritage in experiential and engaging ways. Individuals are encouraged to bake their own collections, a creative and delicious alternative to previous practices of antiquities collecting (given the ethical concerns with the antiquities trade, repatriation, and private, inaccessible collections). Inspired by the important work of many historians and archaeologists of past foodways, as well as more Blumenthalian approaches to gastronomy, Epi.Curio is to be an approachable and inventive resource, one that engages body and mind; the edible objects also remind us that heritage is fleeting, and needs to be maintained in diverse ways. See the live EpiCurio here.
Please note that these are static images - please visit the live website to see the full scope of the project!
Our judges loved this tasty project – commenting that it promoted not only a new way to engage with existing collections, but through creating its own collection, provided a novel way for a vast array of people from across the heritage discipline, general public as well as further abroad to create and curate in entirely novel and engaging ways. The cohesion between the way in which the theme was interpreted and implemented alongside the clarity of paradata and technical capability (both with digital technologies and baking!) stood out to our judges, leading to this outcome being selected as a judges choice award for our online jam.
About the Creator
Katherine Cook is a PhD student in the Department of Archaeology at the University of York, and lives in Hamilton, Canada. Her research combines ethnography, material and landscape analysis, and digital technologies to explore historical periods, particularly death, commemoration and identity in the transatlantic worlds of Canada, the Caribbean, and the United Kingdom.
Many thanks to those who ate the bounty of artifacts that I collected in my kitchen this week, and commented on the design and visualisations for this project (particularly Chrissy Taylor). I also appreciate my current involvement and mentorship at the Institute for Digital Archaeology at the University of Michigan, which has sparked a great deal of my interest in digital heritage, and given me some of the skills to muddle through the web-based element of this project.