Jacques Pepin: renowned chef, paradigm shifter of the American culinary scene, king of omelets, favorite cook of Jackie Kennedy, Julia Child BFF, and…talented painter?
Yes he is, doubter! And he’s got his first solo exhibit, “The Art of Jacques Pepin,” this week in Essex, CT.
Though he’s been painting since 1966 (and illustrating many of his own cookbooks, in fact), Pepin’s pulled a bit of a Grandma Moses in his later years, throwing himself into still lifes, collages, and watercolors. The collection grew to the point where Art Essex Gallery owner George Billis suggested that Pepin display them in an exhibit for the first time ever.
“As we selected pieces for the show to be framed, Jacques, with his loyal dog Paco by his side, turned to me and said, ‘Do you really think people will like my artwork?’” Billis recounted to the New Haven Register. “I replied, ‘Your artwork is an extension of your creative culinary magic — yes, people will love your artwork!”
The exhibit, which runs until November 18th, has 63 framed pieces, nearly all capturing elements of Pepin’s life in the kitchen. If you can’t make it out to Connecticut, check out some of his pieces below, courtesy of the Art Essex Gallery: