Painting A Portrait

The dictionary defines an artist as a person who produces works in any of the arts that are primarily subject to aesthetic criteria. Does this mean that chef’s are considered artists, since they produce meals that are pleasing to see and eat? Artists use mediums like paint and clay and metal to bring their creations to life. Musicians are considered artists because music is composed of notes through instruments that inspire emotion in listeners. If a chef’s medium is food, and since they use all five senses to please, are they considered artists as well?

Chef’s can use seasonality to define a menu, and cause memories in a patron just by certain foods. If a slice of pumpkin pie doesn’t inspire feelings of autumn, then cooks can showcase their own feelings through a simple type of cuisine. For example, Alice Waters brings organic California-influenced cuisine to mind, while Rick Bayless constantly redefines what can be considered Nuevo Latino cuisine. At an even more detailed spectrum, chef’s like Ferran Adria and Grant Achatz use deconstruction and avant-garde cooking techniques to redesign how we perceive food, and manipulate the senses into thinking that one item may actually be something else. A perfect example is Achatz’s hot and cold potato soup. A hot potato is served on a needle made of sugar in a cold soup. It allows for multiple sensations at once. Not to mention these famous culinarians work the plate better than the rest, creating meals that are as amazing to look at as they are to eat.

Some chef’s don’t agree with the idea that cooking is an art form. Chef Jimmy Schmidt says, “I think it’s safer to call (cooking) a craft. To capture the impression… of a certain mood or feeling is a lot tougher in food than it is in other media.” and Joyce Goldstein states, “A craftsperson is one who masters technique… and that comes from practice, which is where school really helps a lot.” (Culinary Artistry, Dornenburg and Page, 1996). Culture plays a direct influence on the craft as well, with each chef becoming a master of cuisines in order to further develop their own. Each cuisine is broken up into distinct groups, where flavors, spices, faith, and geography all coincide. One cook may master French technique in France, but be influenced by growing up in Morocco in the selection of spices. Is this the true art? The blending of cuisines world’s apart in order to convey a message through food?

While the debate over cooking as an art form may never truly be answered, it does open up some great possibilities. Where will cooking go in the future, and how will that effect the choices of future culinary students and foodies? I feel that through time, and a clear understanding of what a diner really wants out the meal, a chef can bring the craft to the level of art. Although it takes immense talent, and I’ll be the first one to say that not all chefs have this, there are those of us who would push the envelope. Those who paint a portrait through food.

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5 Program(s) Found
  • Alumni have appeared in reality competition shows such as Top Chef and Project Runway.
  • Has a team of about 4,000 faculty members focused on helping students tap opportunities in a marketplace driven by ideas.
  • Offers programs in design, media arts, fashion, and culinary.
  • Provides program coordinators who work with students to ensure they have the learning materials, assignments, facilities, and faculty to get the most out of the program.
  • Over 50 campus locations nationwide.
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Le Cordon Bleu Schools of North America , Online (campus option available)
  • Its first location, in Paris, officially opened its doors as a culinary school in 1895.
  • Teaches students by having them spend significant time in the kitchen practicing precision techniques.
  • Provide hands-on training from instructors who are certified, master chefs.
  • Offer flexible schedules and online programs.
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  • Member of the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA), the Canadian Network for Innovation in Education (CNIE), and the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE).
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  • Offers more than 150 self-paced, career-relevant programs that are connected to a supportive 24/7 online community of students and faculty.
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  • Nearly 25,000 graduates each year.
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  • Ranked #11 in the 2015 Best Graduate Schools in Social Work by U.S. News & World Report.
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  • Offers 11-stage programs that feature an in-home study component along with a hands-on training module.
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NCP is a California State approved College of Nursing that serves the San Francisco Bay Area. Our nursing programs are attended by many students from nearby of San Francisco, Daly City, San Bruno, Pacifica, Millbrae, Brisbane, San Mateo, Burlingame, Hayward, San Leandro, Oakland, Emeryville, Berkeley, Castro Valley, Union City, Fremont, Concord and San Jose.

  • Ranked 33rd among the Best Grad Schools for Social Work in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • Founded in 1904 as the nation’s first institute of higher learning to offer training for clinical social workers.
  • Provides a rigorous education, including a nationally accredited Master of Social Work (MSW) Program and PhD in Social Work.  
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  • Incorporates social justice values and multicultural perspectives into curriculum. 
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  • Ranked among the Best National Universities in 2015 by U.S. News & World Report.
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  • Houses one of the largest library systems in the Pacific Northwest, with 3 libraries on the Pullman campus and a library at each regional campus.
  • Accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).
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  • Students can complete an entry-level technician program in about a year, and manufacturer training and graduate in as little as 18 months.
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  • Partners with many well-known manufacturers, including General Motors, Porsche Cars North America Inc., and BMW of North America LLC.
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  • Some campuses host low-cost medical and dental clinics, where students can get real-world experience.
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  • Ranked among the Best National Universities in 2014 & 2015 by U.S. News & World Report.
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  • Offers study abroad programs in several countries all over the world.
  • Has achieved accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE).
  • Its main campus is located in Syracuse, New York, with extended campuses in a number of major metro cities including Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, New York City, and more.
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Good for Working Adults
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  • Flexible Scheduling
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