I’ve always thought of wine-making as an art form — in the same category as fine cheese and fine chocolate production–though at the same time I try not to forget I’m fortunate to even be able to have an
opinion on this.
But I’ve been pleasantly surprised to see such culinary craft being combined with more traditional, and in some ways more easily accessible, forms of art.
A new venture by one of my favourite New Zealand wineries is promoting non-commercial art. Kim Crawford Wines, who makes fantastic Sauvignon Blancs, launched something called ‘The Artists’ Lounge‘ on their website this autumn. It’s an on-line community that is, in their words, ‘Designed to celebrate emerging artists, uncork creativity and let the community start something.’
Basically they have created a virtual free space, using their clout in the wine industry as a call-to-action, which encourages emerging artists and customers to meet and interact freely over the topic of art. There are four ‘resident’ artists who ‘chair’ the community, where members can create profiles, share their ideas and work with others and choose artwork they like. A driving force behind The Artists’ Lounge is a contest that picks one member contribution every two weeks, leading to a grand prize contest where the winner will receive a free trip for two to New Zealand.
I think Kim Crawford’s commitment to the art community is great and opens new doors for linking culinary art with visual art. Resident winemaker Matt Large sums their intentions up best by saying, ‘We’re taking our individualistic spirit beyond the wine bottle and hope to inspire, engage and support the emerging art community with The Artists’ Lounge.’