RECIPE BOX underway now at Wisconsin Triennial

Our latest project is live at the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art (MMOCA). RECIPE BOX celebrates the humble containers many of us cram full of index cards, notes, and clippings. Beyond this sometimes nostalgic reflection, the project celebrates as well the food knowledges and cultures that are lost, displaced, undervalued, as well as the kinds of food know-how that are in daily use but not yet committed to a share-able form.

The impulse for the project was a response to the emotion-laden, chaotic pile of recipe cards that Laurie Beth and Michael inherited from two mothers and four grandmothers.

An old cardboard box surrounded by disorganized pile of handwritten recipe cards

At the museum, visitors can sort through our pile (we’ve scanned everything), contribute a handwritten recipe of their own, and take home a papercraft recipe box to store their cooking knowledge.

All the contributed material is online at, where you can share a recipe and its story, or a photo of your recipe box or other storage system and the story of how it came to be.

For us an important part of the project is, as always, the conversations and stories people share. We’re holding a series of potlucks in the museum lobby and had our first one on Sunday, October 26. We’ll post menus and some photos for each one.


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