This week’s Bread Basket is about the art of bread. Or the bread of art. One of those. It features two painters/illustrators who are both also bread bakers, and who include bread among their subjects. And coincidentally, both of whom happen to be named Molly/Mollie.
Mollie Douthit (@mollie.douthit) is a painter from Grand Forks, North Dakota and Ireland who mainly works in miniature and still-life. She’s also a bread baker. Here’s how she relates her baking to her art, in which her loaves often appear:
As an extension and complement to my painting practice, I operate a micro bakery called ‘ie bakes.’ Whether at home or on residency, I am always baking. I make bread weekly with my starter named Sponge, often producing two loaves it has become a ritual of gratitude for me give one loaf to someone who is on my mind. The products and parameters are constantly changing — sometimes they are gifted, made for bake sale fundraisers, or for my weekly community-supported baking program. Because food is one of my primary muses, the baked goods, as well as their stories, are inevitably featured in my paintings and drawings.
In her Chair series, she paints portraits of “objects of relevance”—among them many baked goods—each one seated upon the same yellow chair:
She also painted one of my favorite subjects, the post-bake parchment paper:
Molly Reeder (@mollyreader) is a painter and stylist specializing in botanicals and food illustration from Richmond, VA. Unlike the former Mollie, her (watercolor) work is large scale, and nearly photo-realistic in detail. She too is a baker, who writes of the relationship between baking and her art in this way: “Food styling and baking are complimentary focuses that serve a symbiotic relationship to [my] artwork.”
The sourdough loaf painting is available to purchase as a pay-what-you-can archival inkjet print in various sizes; many of her other images are available as prints as well.
Reeder’s Kitchen Drawing series features pencil illustrations of bakers and chefs working in their home kitchens, and it includes the above drawing of my friend (and also talented bread artist/artist of bread) Johanna Kindvall.
-> Molly Reader
That’s it for this week’s Bread Basket. I hope you have a peaceful and long MLK long weekend. See you all next week.