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BOXES beyond borders

Project Recipe Box

Ye Shu Fang
Singapore 2001

This is a collaborative effort by mail/email, having started in December 2000 and will conclude December 2002. It asks participants to contribute a recipe from their mothers. The word recipe is open to interpretations: memories/ remedies/ conversations that occur in the kitchen/ contents of a pre-packed lunch/ etc. This is a simple project, based on a chain of words – women/ mothers/ cooking/ kitchen – used within a simplistic context of a stereotype, there are many distinct and different identities. In a kitchen, each woman develops multiple and complex ways to deal with the role of mother cooking. This role (one associated with sugar-coated sentiments) is also the same role that allows a woman (who may have been defaulted into the kitchen) some measures of control over her family. The kitchen can be a very powerful or oppressive place depending on the woman occupying it. I would like to think that every mother occupied it differently. I hope that this project (a small and incomplete record of their many facets) may serve as a humble but deserving tribute to all our mothers. And if it fails to do that, it is at least, a collection of recipes to some very delicious and precious dishes.