Consuming Arts Project Exhibits Music and Food

MSU College of Music student forges connections with local food movement through artistic event.

Chelsea Koziatek performs at her first Consuming Arts Project at MICA Gallery, “Curating Roots: The Art of the Local Food Movement”
Koziatek’s project focuses on drawing similarities between the sociology of food and culture with that of music and culture.

Chelsea Koziatek was looking for just the right venue to launch her entrepreneurial project that pushes the boundaries between music and food. She found the perfect place last fall just miles from where she studies music performance through the MSU College of Music.

Koziatek brought a musical component to the opening reception of “Curating Roots: The Art of the Local Food Movement”—an art and photography exhibit in early September at the Michigan Institute of Contemporary Art in Lansing’s Old Town. Joined by a half-dozen MSU student musicians and composers, Koziatek performed live music in the gallery while a chef from the area’s Soup Spoon Café served up foods inspired by her musical selections.

“I was beyond thrilled by the response,” says Koziatek. “I had no idea what to expect and was so pleased with the symbiosis that took place between the food and the music and the art.”

See the video below courtesy Lansing Public Media

The event was Koziatek’s first within her “Consuming Art Project,” funded by a grant through the College of Music’s Running Start Competition. Koziatek received a $1,000 grant in the spring of 2015 through the annual competition designed to help students think in entrepreneurial ways and to undertake projects that can impact their careers. The MSU Federal Credit Union supports the competition with additional funding provided from the College of Music.

Director of Career Services and Music Entrepreneurship Christine Beamer says she immediately saw the potential of Koziatek’s project to engage the local food scene and to tap into the "foodie" trend.

“I think a key characteristic of Chelsea’s project is flexibility,” Beamer says. “The project originally started as a catered lecture recital, but as Chelsea met with community members and business owners, she showed her ability to adapt her concept to meet the needs of audiences. The MICA Gallery opening is an example of how she’s really tapped into the recent energy surrounding local food in Lansing.”

Koziatek says she has begun conversations with local restaurants about her project, and is planning similar events to what unfolded at MICA.

“For me, it’s all about sustainability, and that all happens on a community level first,” she says. “My desire it to integrate the community through local composers, venues and foods. That’s the first step in creating something that will have long-lasting effect.”

The “Consuming Arts Project” at the MICA gallery exhibit in September 2015 showcased Michigan musicians and composers, many with strong connections to the MSU College of Music. Joining Koziatek in the chamber music and percussion-driven program were MSU music students Casey Grev, Tia Harvey, Kevin Keith, Alex Smith and Zuri Wells. Among the featured musical selections with MSU ties were those by MSU composition students Philip Rice and Justin Rito and MSU alumni Ashlee Busch and David Maslanka.    

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