The Dance by Matisse in Lobster and Spinach


When Matisse unveiled his famous dance painting an art critic scoffed at it calling it “Lobster people dancing in spinach”. This criticism is so imaginative and creative, it makes me suspect that the critic secretly loved the painting but didn’t wish to reveal his sentiments. What is it that makes us dismiss things that we love? To explore this question I got some lobster and some spinach and started dancing in the kitchen.

This project has been on my mind for months and months. In preparation for it, I cooked lobster several times so that I wouldn’t be a novice when I filmed the video. Although I limited myself to buying frozen lobster or precooked lobster, avoiding the killing a living thing scenario, I was not able to get over the squeamishness I felt each time I handled the dead critter. Cooking is pleasure in general. Preparing lobster in my kitchen is not. In the end, I decided to just make the video and get it over with so that I don’t have to think about lobster any more. I will continue to enjoy eating lobster in restaurants, I just don’t want to prepare it myself at home. The end result shows my level of discomfort. In hind sight I can think of a number of things I could have done different to produce a better result. But here it is with all it flaws, over and done with. Sigh of relief.

Perhaps my resistance is an indication of my resistance to the philosophical question posed by the video. I don’t want to know why I dismiss things that I secretly love. Thinking about it brings up feelings of anxiety that I want to push away and forget about.

I am Matisse-ed out. I need to move on to another interest although living in his world felt like a beautiful vivid dream.

Ingredients:

4 lobster tails
1 whole pre-cooked lobster
1 large bag of fresh spinach
1 cup of rice
neon blue food coloring
An onion
balsamic vinegar reduction.

I cut the lobster tail down the middle, drizzled in oil and baked for 10 minutes in a 400 over until fully cooked.
I placed the precooked lobster in the oven for 2 minutes just to heat it up.
removed all the meat of the lobster and chopped it fine.

chopped the onion.
sauteed the onion in olive oil
add the spinach to cook it down
add salt and pepper
place in a food process

boil water in a pot
Add food coloring
add salt
add rice until fully cooked.

arrange the rice on the plate, then spinach.
arrange the lobster bits
drizzle with balsamic vinegar reduction.

End Result

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