On Saturday, Dec. 3, 2016 at 3 p.m., Whole Foods Market Miami will partner with artist and conservationist Kevin McHugh to convey the impact of Whole Foods Market’s Take A Bite Out Of Lionfish campaign at Miami’s famed art fair, Art Basel Miami Beach/Art Week 2016. Earlier this year, the healthy grocer was the first to introduce lionfish to their line of seafood products as a fresh and delicious new option at the retailer’s 26 Florida stores to support their mission to move the seafood industry toward greater sustainability and creating healthier ecosystems.
Alongside style innovator and icon Patricia Field, Whole Foods Market and McHugh will showcase at Field’s debut of ArtFashion™, a curated collection of one-of-a-kind artist created pieces at White Dot Gallery in Wynwood. In addition to Field’s exclusive pieces, the collection will transform into an interactive art bazaar, featuring a mix of paintings, sculptures, photography, and other varying art mediums – to include McHugh’s marine-inspired pieces.
McHugh’s featured installation will be comprised of two distinct dioramas, each using repurposed trash and found items to create mannequins and props:
· What’s For Dinner? (Lionfish) – will highlight Swarovski-encrusted lionfish plated in front of the mannequins who can be perceived as wholesome and environmentally aware.
· What’s Not For Dinner? (Shark Fin Soup) – will explore a darker emotion, serving up Swarovski-encrusted shark fins in bowls of red glass beads while Swarovski-encrusted finned sharks are unceremoniously discarded on the floor like garbage. The mannequins can be perceived as bloated, wasteful people who do not care about the environment.
McHugh was inspired by the influx of news surrounding the negative impact the non-native and invasive species has on U.S. waters and the ecosystem which led to the partnership with Whole Foods Market. Side-by-side, McHugh will showcase his lionfish-inspired installations while David Ventura, Seafood Coordinator for Whole Foods Market Florida Region and Brett Nagelbush, Seafood Team Leader for Whole Foods Market Aventura, will execute a lionfish filleting demonstration and ceviche sampling paired with a Miami Cocktail Company Beverage, currently featured at Whole Foods Market stores. The ceviche recipe and a coupon offer will be given to guests upon entering the exhibit.
McHugh, an official partner of Oceana and the local Florida SharkTeamOne, has been supporting the movement to reduce the number of lionfish in the wild, merging his interest in marine life and passion for conservation into one-of-a-kind pioneering sculptures. His custom fiberglass pieces are hand-painted and then meticulously encrusted with thousands of Swarovski crystals. Each crystal is individually hand-applied and some works can take as long as two months to complete. A portion of the proceeds from all works sold will be donated to marine research and conservation organizations.
As an added bonus, guests will have the opportunity to enter to win a $100 Whole Foods Market Gift Card – hopefully to use towards a lionfish purchase.