Taking the form of a traditional “bake sale,” this project presents a group of anonymous problems that are baked into cookies and available for exchange with the viewer. To receive a cookie, viewers (now participants) must submit one of their own problems by writing it down on the card provided and depositing it into the box. The submitted problems will then be baked into the next batch of cookies, which will be replenished throughout the exhibition.
At its most basic level, the “bake sale” trades cookies for project participation. While no money changes hands, it still asks something of us. Participants also exchange their problems for someone else’s. We are able to relieve ourselves of a burden, whether mundane (“netflix addiction”) or deeply personal (“premature ovarian failure”), only to take on another’s.
Is one problem worth more than another? Is one cookie less enticing because of what is stamped into it? Is it fair to exchange a “strange groin lump” problem for the “flat bike tire” cookie? Is that even considered a bargain? Finally, what is the value of the artist/baker’s labor?
About the Artist
Katie Latona (b. 1981 in Islip, New York) received a BA from Fordham University in 2003. She has exhibited nationally and works on projects in a variety of media for galleries and public spaces. From a background in painting, Katie’s practice is now predominately materials-based, and involves performance, photography, and video. Her focus has long been on using ephemeral systems to investigate language: how it circulates, and what it asks of us. She is currently an MFA candidate at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Image courtesy the artist.