COVID-19 has caused businesses big and small to close their doors, from barber shops to colleges to corporate headquarters. What we’ve deemed to be “essential” has fundamentally shifted. Restaurants and supermarkets have been able to stay open, albeit with some restrictions, in most of the United States. Still, the anxieties around running out of supplies have incited a commerce of fear. Food and house products have been hoarded, causing shortages across the country as we “shelter in place” for an uncertain length of time. Conversely, kitchens have become sources of productivity, purpose, and joy, as more people have found cooking as a way to keep busy and stay safe in quarantine. Apocalyptic scenes in grocery stores are juxtaposed with images of sourdough loaves and shallot pantry pastas on social media.
Landscape considers this context, and my narrative within it. Featuring photographs of food stored in my refrigerator, and self-portraits in my parents’ kitchen and laundry room, I invite viewers to explore our relationships to food, fear, isolation, and preservation.
Jason Rathman is a Tufts alumnus turned Tufts administrator turned SMFA CE student. He is normally based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, but is currently sheltering with his parents and dogs in Stamford, Connecticut.