Yesterday I stared at a crystal deer, smirked at sugary hamburgers and read lyrical biscuits. There were wide-eyed cakes, a cloud-cuckoo wedding cake – replete with a weirdo Brangelina – and a twinkly-eyed Captain Fair Trade. What on earth was going on? I was in the Future Gallery on Great Newport Street and all of these wonderful and weird creations were edible. Art you can eat, what’s not to love.
The Cake Britain show, sponsored by Tate & Lyle in support of their fairtrade campaign, features works of art that have been baked and crafted out of sugar and chocolate and a fair bit of effort. It will last until this Sunday, when in a great Marie Antoinette fashion it will all be scoffed. Hurrah!
Balloons hung in the air, the string heavy with teeny mearingues, and the whole room smelt gloriously sweet. Children and Big children (you know, adults like me who refuse to grow up) stared in wonderment. My favourite cakes were the lyrics – baked by Miss Cakehead – which spelt out The Chaos by Future Head in suede-effect black iced biscuits and the incredible stag’s head – brown and tawny, huge and sad – it looked too esquisite to be true.
It reminded me of my own attempts to bake cakes that look better than just good enough to eat. Like my boyfriend’s cricket ball cake where I piped the seam onto “the ball” and dyed coconut green to make the “grass”. Or the Secret Garden Cake that Josh, Simone and I made for Leonie’s birthday that took hours of stamping out tiny sugar flowers, pebbles made of icing sugar and a shed made of cadbury’s flakes.
Making something so pretty (or so silly) out of cake is thrilling. The sense of achievement when you’re done is incredible and then the fact you can eat it is, well, the icing on the cake. I enjoyed Cake Britain hugely, not least because, it turned that old adage – don’t play with your food – on it’s head. Play, create, enjoy.
The show takes place until Sunday 29 August.
The Future Gallery, 5 Great Newport Street, London, WC2H 7HY
Open 10am- 6pm.
Free to get in but donations welcome. Proceeds will go to charity.
More details at: www.facebook.com/welovebaking