In the Self Initiated Project ‘Deconstructing Dinner’, KISD students use various small dinner events and workshops to break up the entrenched image of dining together and reinterpret this habit, which is so heavily laden with social rites and communicative rules of behaviour by deconstructing the place of the dining table.

Food, a crucial aspect of our individual and social identity, is deeply rooted in our culture. From the way we touch, smell and consume food to the objects and surroundings we choose, our eating habits reflect who we are. Tableware, the ambience and even the background noise have a huge impact on our dining experience. All of these elements not only have personal meaning, but also convey cultural messages. From an early age, we learn how to use utensils correctly and the meanings behind them. The furniture and the table setting not only affect our comfort, but also regulate our behaviour by determining our posture and our movements. Every society prescribes conventions and rules for consumption and thus shapes the way we eat.

For our first dinner event, we wanted to experiment with serving guests at two contrasting tables with different sized table surfaces and portions. The unusually dark cake revealed both sweet and salty flavours and caused irritation. In the end, the two groups of tables were moved together so that the participants could chat to each other.



Hannah Flintrop, Viola Funke, Nicolas Salfner, Amber Watts, Masha Kuzmina, Emma Grau, Pavla Geschwandtner, Gardy Wu

Photos by Deconstructing Dinner Team