“Most chefs go through a rocky road before achieving success. And even then, a professional kitchen is an extremely tough environment, both physically and mentally; and while famous chefs’ faces may appear on magazine covers, their hands often reveal a less glamorous story. I have been working on a series of photographs in which I take a close look at the hands of chefs, and shine a light on how real, beautiful, scarred, vulnerable and strong they are. Each image will hopefully reveal a part of their personality and engage visually in the conversation around the strain on mental health in the restaurant world. — Joakim Blockstrom
Chefs’ Hands is a project raising money and awareness for the campaign, Pilot Light, which addresses mental health, particularly in the culinary workplace; a notoriously gruelling environment. The exhibition is on view at Carousel until January 2019.
Pilot Light was originally conceived in November 2017 by chef Andrew Clarke of St Leonards restaurant. It is affiliated with Time to Change, a long-running campaign that addresses the stigma around mental health. Their common goal is a manifesto for restaurants, to commit to making a real change in working conditions of staff in professional kitchens. Pilot Light will officially launch in February 2019.
If these hands could speak, the stories they would tell…