Edible Book Festival 2013
April 1st marked not just April Fool’s Day but also the International Edible Book Festival 2013 . This was the first year the tradition was celebrated on campus at the University of Maryland. Art librarian Judith A. Hoffberg and artist Béatrice Coron came up with the idea of edible book displays in 1999, as a means of paying homage to Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin (1755-1826), a French food connoisseur famous for his 1825 book The Physiology of Taste, Or, Meditations on Transcendental Gastronomy.
Below are photographs of all 19 entries at the inaugural festival, including the best in show.
There seemed to be a number of strategies on display. One competitor recreated the original book cover:
A number of entries were more or less literal depictions of the book titles:
A couple of the tableaux were interpretations of particular scenes from their books. A Douglas Adams homage included the cover to the book-within-the-book in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and the “dish of the day” cow from The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, and a tribute to J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit took the form of “Smaug’s Stash” cupcakes.
Most of the remaining entries involved some kind of pun on a book’s title:
“The Well-Temper’d Baklavier” puns on J. S. Bach’s The Well-Tempered Clavier looked to be much the most delicious entry of the day:
My favorites, however, were the very clever “Decline and Fall of the Ramen Empire” and the winner of best in show, “Grape Expectations”:
Congratulations to Laura for her winning entry! Here’s hoping this becomes a flourishing annual tradition for the University of Maryland libraries.
See here for a photo gallery of some of the best edible books produced around the world in recent years.