Five hundred children visited Whitechapel Gallery on 28 January 1973 to learn about sweets as a popular art. An enticing display of confectionary – Belgian chocolate coins, French lollipops shaped as the Eiffel Tower, coffee-flavoured Hopjes from Holland, Italian marzipan fruits, salty licorice from Denmark, toffee from Yorkshire – was part of the “Fanfare for Europe” celebrations, marking Britain’s entry into the European Common Market. The exhibition came to an unexpected end when the children overwhelmed the guard and devoured all the displays.
A new film by Ulla von Brandenburg, commissioned by Whitechapel Gallery with Le Prix Marcel Duchamp, recreates the event. Renowned for a body of work drawing on theatre and performance to explore complex social issues, von Brandenburg has also designed a colourful seating structure resembling a landscape, transforming spectator into participant.