From October 30 to November 12, Riga hosts Autumn Restaurant Week, during which many of the city’s restaurants offer special menus. To encourage residents and visitors to explore what the restaurants have to offer, the Brand and Design Department of Riga City Council and digital agency Wrong are running an advertising campaign centred on photographer Zane Priede’s surreal and alluring food photography, which stands out both on digital platforms and in urban environments.
The photographs for the campaign by Zane Priede are based on the idea of the plate as a stage, where the products, coming together in acrobatic compositions, perform a gourmet spectacle. «Going to a restaurant gives me the same feeling as going to a play or a concert. Only this performance is dedicated to the taste buds and the aesthetic experience,» Zane explains the inspiration behind the concept.
The different products, which appear in surreal compositions in the images, seem at once familiar and surprising – like common ingredients that a skilled chef can turn into a unique meal. The tableware and cutlery present in the photographs are also reminiscent of the restaurant. Although the images are generally monochromatic, they have a bright palette that stands out in the autumn landscape and brings cheerfulness to the cityscape.
When starting work on the photographs, Zane chose five themes or menu sections — appetisers, seafood, vegetables, and two dessert courses — and created a long list of products for each of them, with a sketch for each ingredient to give a quicker visual read of the shapes that could be used. Next, the photographer sketched different combinations of products for each theme, looking for the most striking composition. «A sketch is one thing, but reality usually leads to something else, because in the store, each vegetable is of its own unique length and shape, however it is delivered that day. There are things that are suddenly nowhere to be found, and others that I hadn’t even thought of. For example, the fougasse bread in the orange composition was baked by me, while the mushrooms were picked in the forest by a friend,» says Zane about the process.
Riga Restaurant Week continues until November 12. The event’s promotional campaign is carried out by the Brand and Design Department of Riga City Council in cooperation with the digital agency Wrong. Campaign concept by Dārta Apsīte, Dārta Sakārne, and Kristiāna Marija Sproģe. Graphic design by Kristiāna Marija Sproģe. You can follow Zane Priedes’ work on her website and Instagram account.