Q&A with Flower and Herb Expert Shannon Algiere
Shannon Algiere learned a hard but important lesson in her teens: Pollution and environmental destruction are rampant and everyone pays the cost. In light of this she has dedicated herself to “living in the beauty way.” Since 2003 that way has taken place at Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture, where she serves as the Flower and Herb Manager. She deeply believes in the healing potency of her beloved plants and shares some of her insights with us.
Q&A with Paddle Diva Gina Bradley
A lifelong water sports enthusiast, Gina Bradley took to paddle boarding the moment she set foot on her first board. Not only did it offer a fresh perspective on her beloved East End, it also provided a remarkable physical workout. In no time, she had her friends joining her on her daily jaunts. And soon after that, Paddle Diva—a stand up paddling board school for women—was born. In addition to teaching,Bradley is also an environmental activist. She shares some of her philosophy with us below. Find out more at www.paddlediva.com
Q&A with Beekeeper Mary Woltz
Mary Woltz was first introduced to honey bees in 2002. Within a year, she found herself in charge of over one hundred colonies! Luckily, she fell deeply in love with these hardworking ladies—believing that a happy bee is a productive bee. In 2011, she started her own line of honey products as well as the first community supported api-culture program through which she sells shares of honey along with a visit to her thriving hives. It’s hard work, but work that Woltz greatly enjoys. And values: No bees, no food.
Q&A with ‘Sciartiast’ Courtney Mattison
Courtney Mattison is a self-proclaimed “sciartist”: Part Brown-educated environmental scientist and part RISD-educated artist. Her vibrant yet fragile depictions of our oceans’ threatened ecosystem have been causing quite a stir. Origin Magazine pronounced her one of 2015’s top 100 “Ocean Heroes,” and the International SeaKeepers Society named her Artist of the Year. It’s easy to see why. Her colorful and often sprawling pieces are a delight, yet their message is urgent: We must reverse climate change now or all of this will be gone. Courtney hopes by bringing the staggering damage that’s happening in the oceans above the surface and into galleries (such as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), people will begin to deepen their understanding of just what’s at stake—and take action.
Q&A with Kim Gabelmann
Burnt out from a successful but strenuous career in TV advertising sales, Kim Gabelmann discovered the rejuvenating wonders of juice. It wasn’t long before she’d ditched her once beloved job, sold her Tribeca apartment, and took off with her dog on a series of cross-country research road trips all of which resulted in the much lauded vegan kitchen, juice, and art space better known as consciousfork℠. Nestled in the charming village of Warwick, NY, consciousfork℠ opened its door in June of 2012.
Q&A with Morgane Le Fay designer Liliana Casabel
Liliana Casabal founded Morgane Le Fay in Soho in 1982 with the belief that fashion can be healing and boundless in addition to being astoundingly beautiful. She also believed it could be handmade one garment at a time in her new beloved New York City. Impeccably tailored with an eye for the whimsical, Casabal now has four stores (two on each coast) and continues to keep the production local and the designs timeless—no “fast fashion” here, these are pieces that will inspire for decades.
Love Is In The Air
The origins of Valentine’s Day are murky, but most of the versions contain martyrdom and mystery. The mystery part lines up with my grade school memories of glittery cutout cards rife with cupids that I sent to boy crushes while I waited to receive some glittery cupids of my own. We actually had to have cards for everyone which, in retrospect, I realize was an exercise in inclusive kindness. Along with the cards came those candy hearts stamped with fun sayings, red cinnamon candies, and Hershey Kisses.
Q&A with Celine McDonald
Celine McDonald has been painting since she was a child, and the quiet precision of her work reflects as much. Restrained yet bold, her paintings have been exhibited at galleries and museums from New York City to Miami. I’ve known Celine for going on ten years, and like her paintings, have found her to be calm and present—yet also spirited. I was delighted to interview her and discover more about her life.
Q&A with Kerber’s Farm Nick Voulgaris III
Located in Huntington, New York, Kerber’s Farm is bursting with fresh produce, homemade goods, and nostalgic charm. The farm, originally founded in 1941 by Paul Kerber, recently underwent a complete renovation thanks to new owner Nick Voulgaris III. Voulgaris often visited as a small child and wanted to embrace its history while updating it into a fully operating farm. Here, Nick talks about connecting to the earth, and bringing Kerber’s Farm into the future while honoring its past.
In celebration of a life well lived: Doug Tompkins
About this time of year in 2010, David and I flew to Chile to meet Kris and Doug Tompkins. We were interested in learning more about their vision—which was an ambitious one—to create national parks in Chile and Argentina on a scale never seen before in Latin America. They were inspired by the Rockefeller legacy of National Parks in the United States and were committed to protecting millions of pristine acres.
Q&A with Artist Krisse Pasternack
Krisse Pasternack works with an acute awareness of the fragility of life—in particular, our environment. She shares our love of the mermaid (in a variety of shapes and ages), and also hybridizes women with mangroves, owls, octopi, and stone crabs. The result is both arresting and “portends this decisive moment in the discourse between Earth and its dominant inhabitants.” More recently, she’s moved away from the starkness of porcelain and into the colorful world of photography and digital manipulation. No matter her medium, Pasternack’s goal is to shed light on the increasing vulnerability of our planet.
A love letter to the ocean
My earliest memories are of the ocean. Summer days spent splashing around the eastern end of Long Island and sculpting sandcastles beneath a fading afternoon sun. As I dove into the Atlantic’s mighty waves and dug deep into the sand, my imagination would ebb and flow alongside the sea. Even then, as a young girl, I understood the power of these waters.
Film Review for The Little Prince
I recently had the opportunity to co-host a screening of The Little Prince at the Museum of Modern Art, alongside Ohana & Co. The film is an adaptation of the famous Antoine de Saint-Exupéry book about an old pilot who encounters an alien prince while stranded in the desert. The story examines friendship and love—themes that are amplified in this modern reinterpretation which frames the classic plot within an original tale about a girl whose mother plans every moment of the girl’s life, leaving nothing to chance.
Meet Rachel Dana
Rachel Dana started Dana Confection Co. after experiencing first-hand the joy and inspiration that comes from cooking with the seasons. The constantly changing ingredients led her to explore local fruits and preservation methods and, ultimately, to bring the beloved French calisson to the American market. By using farm fresh fruit at the peak of flavor, Dana Confection Co. honors the traditional methods of calisson production while featuring local ingredients and forward-thinking, sustainable processes. The result is a bite of handmade decadence sure to satisfy both the most discerning palate and the sweetest tooth.
Q&A with Culinary Nutritionist Stefanie Sacks
Stefanie Sacks, MS, CNS, CDN is a culinary nutritionist, author, radio show host, educator, speaker and consultant. Studying food and healing for 25 years, she is a self-described ‘Culinary Nutritionist’ – a professional chef with a Masters of Science in Nutrition. Her blog, What The Fork Weekly features her Stirring the Pot™ radio show that airs on Hamptons NPR, WPPB 88.3FM and via podcast. She is the author of What the Fork Are You Eating?, a book that emphasizes making small dietary changes to create a big change in your own life, and the lives of others. We spoke with Stefanie about her book, our shared values, and some easy and delicious recipes from her book to help jumpstart the food revolution.
Q&A with Designer Cara Piazza
Cara Marie Piazza is a Natural Dyer and Textile Designer living and producing her work in New York City. Committed to sustainable and ethical production, she manufactures all of her pieces here in NYC with all fabrics sourced ethically and sustainably using organic cottons, bamboo fibers, and peace silks.
Q&A with RE/DONE
RE/DONE is an innovative brand that repurposes discarded denim to create modern styles with the unique feel of worn-in jeans. Founded by Sean Barron and Jamie Mazur, the pair used Barron’s background in apparel and Mazur’s vintage inspirations to restore individuality to luxury design. What began as a creative vision evolved into a movement that keeps heritage brands relevant and creates sustainability in fashion.
The Tribeca Shortlist
This week, we are thrilled to have Food for Thought, Food for Life featured with Tribeca Shortlist as part of a specially selected group of films curated by Martha Stewart. The new streaming service from TribecaEnterprises and Lionsgate films offers a handpicked selection of high-quality movies from celebrities and industry experts, and Martha’s list focuses on one of her primary areas of expertise – food!
Food Day: Recap
It’s so exciting that Food Day continues to gain momentum and enthusiasm across the globe. With a focus on inspiring people to change their diets and our food policies, events took place worldwide that helped increase awareness and educate the public on many important issues, such as: local farming, industrial agriculture, animal conditions, and fair labor practices.
Goddess of Love Incarnate:
David and I were honored to host a party for documentary filmmaker and writer Leslie Zemeckis’ latest book, Goddess of Love Incarnate: The Life of Stripteuse Lili St. Cyr. The biography chronicles the life of a woman who was a famous stripteaser, rubbing elbows with many of Hollywood’s elite. Much of her life was full of adventure, romance, and fame, yet in her later years she became a recluse who’d lost her fortune and became addicted to heroin. Lili was a complicated and enigmatic woman, and Zemeckis captures her story beautifully.
Q&A with Cloud Cult
Experimental indie-rock band Cloud Cult provides the soundtrack and art for Food for Thought, Food for Life, and they’ll be hosting a screening event on October 24th in their hometown of Viroqua, Wisconsin to help start the conversation. They are longtime supporters of the environment and advocates for sustainability, and with critically acclaimed live performances that even feature live painting, Cloud Cult is reimagining a better world from every angle.
I’ve had the pleasure of seeing many of the Robert Zemeckis’ films that are currently being showcased at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. The retrospective coincides with the release of Zemeckis’ newest film The Walk, which explores Phillippe Petit’s artistic vision and focuses on his infamous tightrope walk between the World Trade Center towers. Created in dizzying 3-D with advanced computer graphics, I experienced The Walk with Petit as though I was actually there.
I’m thrilled to be participating in the upcoming Farm2Fork Festival October 24th & 25th in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The festival is put on by Rodale’s Organic life – the stylish guide to living naturally in the modern world – and will focus on local ingredients that are both good for our planet and good for our bodies.
May The Wind Be Always At Your Back
This is a sentiment that rings true whenever feelings of gratitude and mystery are present, and the words were at the forefront of my mind last week when I had the opportunity to sail with my husband David and our teammates Mia Thompson, Ned Johnston, and Wells Bacon in the International One-Design (IOD) World Championship. The race was held at Nantucket Yacht club and showcased one-design boat vessels, which are 33-foot yachts designed for single day racing. IOD fleets must follow a strict set of rules to ensure that each boat is as equal as possible, which means that the race focuses solely on the sailing skills and acumen of the crew.
Susan Rockefeller on Protecting What Is Precious
Mermaids have captivated her imagination since she was a child. Part human and part fish, the mermaid bridges two worlds. Laid back and fully comfortable in her own skin, Susan Cohn Rockefeller spoke with a relaxed cadence that would easily conjure memories of the ocean—the soothing sound of ocean waves.
On Monday evening I co-hosted the Turtle Ball with Eric Goode, Rick Ridgeway, Liev Schreiber, and Naomi Watts. The event took place at The Bowery Hotel and benefitted the Turtle Conservancy, an organization dedicated to protecting the more than 300 turtle species that live on our precious planet.
When We Were Soldiers… once and young
The multitalented artist and social activist Bettina WitteVeen’s photographic installation “When We Were Soldiers… once and young” is currently on view through October 24th at The Brooklyn Navy Yard Hospital Building in New York. The show is a beautiful tribute to the trauma of war, communicated not only by the photographs themselves but also the site-specific installation. At the crux of her work is the theme of potential redemption and a central question: How do we move forward from the violence of our history and awaken the horrors of war in order to help those affected?
Topping Rose House
Last night my husband and I had the pleasure of dining at the Topping Rose House in Bridgehampton. We started with a delightful appetizer of pressed watermelon topped with crab—like a tropical sushi! I’d become a bit too smitten with their bread, so the staff was kind enough to let me order a second appetizer as my main course (with food waste at forty percent in the U.S. I think more farm to table establishments understand the changes happening in food culture): a lobster and vegetable ravioli. My favorite dish of the evening was the salted watermelon radishes with butter (photo). I loved the beauty of the radish as well as its spiciness combined with the smooth butter. All of this wonderfulness was, naturally, accompanied by a fantastic wine list and impeccable service. And who could resist a (teeny) scoop of mint chip ice cream for dessert. Not me!