Aesthetics and the senses / Food and Culture

Sneaker Snacks



In a time when the new Lebron James sneaker can be put on shelves with a retail value well over two-hundred dollars and the culture of consumerism is booming; the assembling of a Nike shoe made out of various foods actually serves a purpose.  At this point we are unhappy with the basics or the necessities so in taking them for granted we spice them up in order to appease or affirm the standard to which we have become so accustomed. This similarity lies not only in our consumerist culture, but also in a subset of symbolism and judgment that essentially makes the claim that the shoes one wears and the food one eats say something about that person. Affirming oneself to these societal standards has become so important that companies have been able to put an exact price on this happiness. Not only that but what the consumer desires to affirm his or herself has become so predictable that companies can pump out seemingly formula-based products. Furthermore, we will stop at nothing and use any means necessary to make this consumerist process as effortless as possible. That entails raising animals simply for slaughter so that we can enjoy the priciest pieces of meat and exporting jobs under umbrella corporations so that sneakers can be made with much cheaper labor costs. This is what I took away from a picture of a sneaker made out of food.  


5 thoughts on “Sneaker Snacks

  1. this made me think of my own blog and how can we technically be labeled as what we eat or how we dress or many other materialistic items. I am starting to think we are, why would someone spend so much time, effort or money on things that really only matter skin deep? Food is definitely a necessity but to the extremes we do take these necessities can be considered absurd.

  2. I wrote on this piece also and am interested in the consistency between our two analyses. Both of us got an grim and overt picture of American Consumerism out of it. I like this because it not only reaffirms my interpretation of the work, but it demonstrates a level of concreteness to the symbols at work in the piece (the subjects of the hamburger and the nike shoe in particular). I really like how you took the analysis even farther to explore the economic aspects of mass-production and outsourcing that are implied by this piece.
    I would also be interested, having seen the similarities between our two analyses to see what someone from another culture might think of this work. Would the image/ingredients be as identifiable? would they have the same impact on the viewer? we talked a little in class about the personal and cultural associations that people develop with food. i wonder how much this affects our reading of this piece. Do other nations also associate the hamburger and nike with American consumerism?

  3. Interesting thought on why a sneaker made out of food is interesting, and why it may have been created. However, can we justify this as art? Is it the sybolism that would make it rational to consider this art? It does make an interesting cultural and economic statement that does set the mind to wondering, but is that enough? Interesting perspective on the “we are what we eat” saying.

  4. Nice image – I like your observation of our obsessive consumerism creating a new kind of judgment that nowadays makes it permissible to “claim that the shoes one wears and the food one eats say[s] something about that person.” Consequently, even though we may disagree, due to the tremendous impact the media and big businesses have on us, the skewed mindset that material possessions are a reliable indicator of a person is becoming a more serious issue. Lately, I have seen articles comparing childhood today to childhood twenty years ago, and people are figuring that there are so many new things like $200+ sneakers and various electronics that are considered necessities nowadays so consumerism will continue to run rampant and only escalate from here.

    Honestly, my initial reaction to this image was, “Gross!” and as I look closer, I think the artist purposely created a raunchy snack to depict the troubling consumerist culture. For example, the bread looks processed, burnt, sloppily cut, and all-around old (is that green mold on the sole to the right of the ketchup?), which could signify the predictable and effortless products. The cheese stuck to the bread looks stiff and artificial and the meat looks overcooked and rigidly cold, indicating the lack of quality even though goods are overpriced, and the oozing ketchup infers that the person wearing the Nikes this snack represents can squish out the people who don’t have these sneakers.

  5. Pingback: Sneaker Snack « History and Literature of Georgian England

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s