Shako Club (or ‘social club’) is a two month long residency project with Vancouver-based artist Cindy Mochizuki and 15 elders from Tonari Gumi who will work together over the course of two months to create a social club setting where she will engage with seniors in a process of creative exchange through a series of free workshops in the Tonari Gumi kitchen and studio space. Mochizuki will work with participants around concepts of wellness, care and food where they will construct culinary “sculptures” incorporating aspects of their own stories, ideas and wellness philosophies. These personal compositions will then be incorporated into the form of the bento box – a traditional Japanese meal set of various plates and dishes. Playing with the form of the bento, participants will work to create a unique “edition” of boxes that incorporate the personal stories gleaned from the workshops, as well as specific recipes and sweets created in the kitchen.
For the final two weeks, the general public can request a limited edition, edible lunch box, in exchange for a “gift” for the seniors who made them. Through this simple—yet deeply collaborative—system of exchange, the notion of caring community gently extends, through food and sociability, into the wider community.
Shako club is a project initiated by the grunt gallery working in collaboration with Tonari Gumi (Vancouver’s Japanese Community Volunteer Association) and the Asian Canadian Studies Society. With financial assistance from Imagine B.C.