What happens when you merge food, architecture and art?
You get Bompas & Parr,
a genius double act of kooky-foodie architects that believe that anything is possible.
Edible Incredible :: Return of the Jelly Knights!
Oh, wibble, wobble jelly ~ I love the creativity of their jelly designs
and I want to have a jelly bar at my party!
On a mission to resurect Jell-o from the abyss of long-forgotten novelty fare, this two-man team has pushed the jiggly dessert to its furthest limits. From painstakingly rendered architectural models to color-coordinated, multi-tiered displays, they have elevated it from forgotten food to an attention-grabbing work of art. One you can not only touch but also consume and–with flavors like Elderflower Jelly with Strawberries and, Courvosier and Blackcurrant Jelly – you’ll be more than excited to do so. Caroline, looks good to me.
Sam Bompas and Harry Parr are London based 27-year-olds who have become famous for their ‘jellies’ food art using gelatin desserts, their parties, and their wackiness. The ‘architectural food-smith’ duo design spectacular food experiences often working on an architectural scale with cutting edge technology and using bespoke jelly moulds.
To celebrate the royal wedding Bompas & Parr created the Buckingham Palace jelly mould for Selfridges. Some of the most memorable moulds in history have been created for royalty. The Brunswick Star and the Alexandra Cross, complex moulds with inner liners were designed to commemorate the 1853 marriage of Edward Prince of Wales to Princess Alexandra of Denmark.
Decadent black jellies and trifles dusted in gold ~ collaboration between Fiona Leahy (party planner extraordinaire) and Bompas & Parr. This black banquet was hosted as part of the London Design Festival.
Funeral Jelly Installation – “At the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art Bompas & Parr created a glow in the dark funeral jelly installation. Guests were served glowing sherry jellies designed with motifs found at the San Francisco Columbarium. A jelly funeral march accompanied the jellies.”
With no formal training in catering (Bompas studied geography and Parr studied architecture), they decided to “do something fun for the summer”, which was initially going to be a jelly stand at Borough Market in London. When they submitted an application to sell their jellies, “They turned us down,” says Bompas, “but we managed to pull in a couple of jobs making fresh fruit jellies for parties. [But] after the Sunday Times included us in an article about the renaissance of traditional English food, business took off.” yellowtrace
It took off quickly, with their striking architectural jellies featuring at parties and events. But finding moulds to create the complex, striking designs was the tricky part. “We soon found that we couldn’t afford to buy decent antique moulds: the market has been cornered by collectors who like to put holes in their moulds and hang them on their kitchen walls,” Bompas explains. “But Harry (Parr) soon realised he could use the techniques he learnt as an architect to help us design our own moulds. Now we’ve created bespoke moulds for all occasions.”From vast glow-in-the-dark jelly installations to a cloud of breathable cocktail to an “occult jam” infused with a strand of hair from the late Princess Diana, Sam Bompas and Harry Parr’s gastronomic experiments have been wowing London’s party scene for the past three years.
Childhood friends, Bompas and Parr initially made their mark by inviting leading architects, including Lord Norman Foster, to design a building-inspired gelatin mold as part of 2008’s London Festival of Architecture.
“When the whole thing ended with an all-out food fight and architects wrestling in jelly,
we knew we were onto something,”
Since then their projects have included a walk-through dining experience spanning 730 years of food history, an Architectural Punchbowl (for which they flooded a stately Robert Adam building with four tons of punch), and, after a food fight erupted at one of their first major events, the Architectural Jelly Banquet, the company introduced payment for its events. Most recently, they have invented a Willy Wonka style flavor changing gum that changes flavour as you chew.
“We’re particularly keen on the idea of micro encapsulation in food right now,” he says. “So with many of the chewing gums, it was about sneakily hiding one flavor within another.”
The guys have also created ‘Alcoholic Architecture’ – a walk in cloud of breathable G&T at a pop-up bar in Soho (gold!), scratch and sniff cinema, 2000-person architectural jelly food fight, a bowl of punch big enough to row a boat across and a massive glowing jelly installation for San Francisco MOMA. Bompas & Parr also claims to be the first group to ever record the sound of jelly wobbling. They first made Jelly Ronson, a glow-in-the-dark alcoholic jelly for Mark Ronson‘s 33rd Birthday Party.
Next up are two of the pair’s most ambitious works to date: a hothouse, located at an international airport (they can’t say which one just yet), filled with poisonous plants from which they plan to make and serve nonpoisonous cocktails; and a floating banquet hall, shaped like a pineapple and big enough to accommodate dozens of people, in the middle of the River Thames. W magazine
“Every day is a joy for us,” says Bompas. “We basically make all our dreams come true”