THE MUSEUM OF ARTS AND DESIGN - AN INSTALLATION OF 2,000 SUGAR CUPS
Margaret Braun’s medium is sugar. During her eight month residency at The Museum of Arts and Design, Braun executed an installation of 2,000 hand-hewn sugar cups. Growing up in Levittown, New York, amongst thousands of cookie-cutter houses, Braun was curious about the ways in which personal identity genuinely thrived when set against sameness. As a child, she chronicled her environment by drafting ornate patterns and alphabets onto surfaces and notebooks. As a professional cake decorator, Braun revisited these ideas while repeating pearls, swags, and arabesques from a glossary of codified architectural motifs onto thousands of cakes.
Mindful of composition and silhouette, Braun pipes familiar patterns onto sugar cups. Allowing for natural changes in line and gesture, attitudes and relationships and personalities are revealed - leading her to question the very meaning of codification. This community of sugar cups - no two alike, is an exercise in individuation, which is a recurring theme in her life. Her practice is also reflection of her work in the kitchen, a place where speed and assimilation reigns. Working in an edible medium, also addresses questions of function, authenticity, temporality and material worth. Her process is rigorous and methodical, creating a studio environment of a fine artist operating under a strict production schedule. Braun is the author of Cakewalk (2001, Rizzoli), works in New York, teaches throughout Europe and South America, and has been featured extensively in film, print and TV.