Nina Bernagozzi


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La Marchande de quatre saisons  I  -   HÎVER      / Febuary 22,  2020

Dîner-exposition à Bagnolé_ - artist-run-space / Bagnolet

"Between men there is an island, I want to go to this island. »

Ostreon, the Greek root of the oyster, gave birth to the concept of ostracism.
During antiquity, Ecclesia used the flat part of the oyster as a ballot to exclude a member of his community who was considered too powerful,
thus presenting a danger to democracy, for a banishment of ten years.
Counterintuitive Ostrea, the Latin root of the oyster, contains in herself this indisputably erotic fruit
and feminine which Casanova used as an object of seduction, foreplay.

This first act is very personal to me, it closes a slow and long period of vacillations in which I remained enclosed in a shell.


In the wake of my dream, I woke up very early that morning, it was still dark, I went outside to gather Narcissus. The winter had been particularly mild, suspiciously lenient, the first tender yellow trumpets, cascading down the streets, strangely precocious. Cutting my thirteen flowers, I saw again the dreamed images whose them forms I forgot it today, more than from the sleep, they were ensuing from colored effusions which was reaching me during my brief somnolences. My day was already beginning, in this space both diurnal and nocturnal, which were accompanying me until the next night. These days in which the body was becoming a clever combination of flexibility and muscular tensions, provided of tentacular limbs, such as an octopus in immersion, agents of these temporalities below the water level.
Then I started to cook.
I was opening the first oysters and it is hers who, inebriating me with their sea breezes, brought me back to the shore. The day was going by and the first guests were already arriving. Huge labyrinthine tables were set up, on which was floating the erotic painted figures of my tablecloths, still white, which would soon be colored by ostracized juices, like emotional relics of the exchanged gazes between the guests of this dinner.
Procedural paintings, which I keep rolled up for the day when it will be necessary to do Act.
In the room, the sound was growing, the exaltation and the discussions made their way, everyone found their place, sat down and without necessarily being aware of it, they were boarding on my limping trawl for a  crossing.

The oysters were starting to flock. The first having already been swallowed in the hall through which we were entering in the premises and which was separating me - me, in the kitchen - from the dinner which was holding in the dining room.

So insidiously, I was ostracizing me -one last time - to make an orgiastic sacrifice of my shells. A dozen dishes were to follow, love and death among the mollusks, the guests was savoring my recluse(s) winter juices, perhaps they were feeling from the tip of their taste buds, eyes half-closed, during their introductory suctions, the gaze of the ostracized which was allowing to observe the world with withdrawal. State that the troubled were already living in and to which I was dedicating this feast.
To make the swell heckles them a bit, I had placed radios on the tables through which my message was sent. In The heart of winter, on the open sea, the forty participants left me to maneuver to navigate this fragile boat where a feudal orgy was taking place, a banquet of which I, myself, was not knowing the outcome.



Thirteen for a dozen 


Fresh oyster, with her second water and a dash of lemon



Risotto with oyster water and cider, sesame and parmesan,

Two raw oysters, lime and a poached oyster between two bergamot leaves.

(2 to 4)


The only one that is not served in her shell,

but on

a buckwheat biscuit, plain oyster, daikon in a creamy and mustard marinade, pear

And oyster water pearl



A natural oyster




Oyster, candided shallots in semi-salted butter, watercress cream, served in her shell



Oyster, grated celery root, mustard cream, cedar, granny apple julienne

and almond, mint and olive oil pesto.



Fresh oyster and a hint of vinegar,

From a mother over forty years old.



Fresh oyster, bitter grapefruit jam with pine honey and gin



Fresh oyster, lemon and spelled bread toast and seaweed butter



Fresh oyster, beetroot granita and extra-fresh and creamy sheep cheese



Raw oyster, candied kumquat, grapefruit supreme and Medjool date



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© Nina Bernagozzi-2019 / Cannot be used without permission.