Murphree's 'Five-Day Feast' Capstone project on display through Dec. 18

Ian Murphree
Ian Murphree

Murphree's 'Five-Day Feast' Capstone project on display through Dec. 18

calendar icon15 Dec 2015    

Lincoln, Neb.--Ian Murphree wants to feed you this week as part of his Capstone Exhibition.

“I like helping people, serving people, making things with your hands,” he said. “That’s why we do this art thing.”

His performance piece, “Five Day Feast,” is in the MEDICI Gallery on the first floor of Richards Hall Dec. 14-18. As part of the project, he serves a meal each day at noon for anyone who shows up to eat it.

Murphree says the project combines everything he has learned.

“I transferred to school here three years ago, and at the same time, I started working at Bread and Cup, a local restaurant,” he said. “Since then I’ve learned the entire art trade in five semesters, and I’ve learned to be a chef in the same amount of time. So I thought my Capstone should represent everything and not just be a painting or a sculpture. It should try to show everything you learned, right?”

He built the table, which seats 12, and he made all of the ceramic pieces used in serving. And he, of course, prepares the food each day.

“I try to choose foods that I like and know how to make,” he said. “And things that I know for a reason. Yesterday [Monday] was lettuce wraps, and I thought that would be a good start to finals week—something fresh. Everything is supposed to be finger food and sharable and passable, that way everyone is involved.”

Associate Professor of Art Eddie Dominguez likes Murphree’s project.

“I think it’s a terrific idea, and I’m pleased he was able to take it this far and actually serve people,” he said. “It’s unusual for a student to make this kind of work, and it has both function and utility. He was self-motivated to do this and is combining all of his interests.”

Murphree said it fits his nature.

“I like feeding people,” he said. “I like making people happy and doing what I can for those around me. This school has definitely helped me and everyone in it, so why not give a little back by giving food? And art students are always hungry.”

Murphree, who is from Omaha, Nebraska, said he originally took psychology at his first college, but didn’t like it.

“I figured out that I’m actually good at art,” he said. “I used to not think I was talented. One of my best friends was really, really talented in art, so I thought I wasn’t that good.”

After graduation on Saturday, he plans to move to Los Angeles in January and eventually work as an art director or prop manager.

“I like the idea of making things for movies. Making things to be used is great,” he said. “We need this specific table, here’s the table. We need a cool hatchet for this character, oh, here’s the hatchet. That seems a lot more satisfying than working in an office.”

In the meantime, you have three more chances for Murphree to cook for you this week.

“All are welcome, and I’ll feed whomever I can,” he said. “I like to have no food left at the end of the day, but I always plan to have too much to feed everyone.”

Richards Hall is located at Stadium Drive and T sts. on the UNL city campus. The MEDICI Gallery is located on the first floor, in the southeast corner of the building.