March 28, 2023

The 1st of 8 LACE’s projects: Hunt & Darton Café

Hunt & Darton Cafe
Christa Holka

On Thursday the 3rd of May two pineapples started to serve canapés, wine and ‘subtle interventions’ at 100 Regent Street in Cambridge. 

It was the launch of the Hunt & Darton Café, an ‘interactive intervention’ run by two artists, Jenny Hunt and Holly Darton, that ‘hires’ live artists as waiters, aiming to change the perception of a social hub like a café on a daily base.


Hunt & Darton Cafe
Image: Christa Holka

The live art duo created this ‘live art installation’ to investigate the meaning of a fully functioning café, deconstructing the business through the exposure of losses and profits sheets, blending the commercial side of it with art and involving unaware customers in micro-performances done by Hunt and Darton with the ‘waiter guests’: Richard DeDominici, Richard Layzell, Hannah Jane Walker, Tatty Del, Kate Hodges, Holly Bodmer, Tom Marshman, Vicki Weitz, Brian Lobel, Ant Roberts, Two Destination Language, Stacy Makishi, and Bryony Kimmings.

Open until the 27 May, this surprising and welcoming environment, which has won the sympathy of the street’s shops and visitors, is though of as a place where everything is art. Starting from the floor with Lisa Wilkens’ book-cover installation to the local sustainable menus that recollect the artists’ childhood memories of food and the dream of having a Sunday everyday.

Exploring the meaning of ‘what it means to be a professional’, Hunt and Darton found an alternative way to sustain their practice without applying for funds, as they will explain in depth in the next film of the series ‘Mixing It Up – An Intergenerational Perspective’ that will be published on-line on Monday, 21 May by New Work Network and Artquest.

This successful experiment, which will be reproduced in Edinburgh at the Fringe Festival 2012, is the first installment of the Live Art Collective East (LACE) programme for this summer. Starting in May and ending in September, twelve LACE artists present eight projects produced by Artsadmin as part of the national cultural programme for the Olympics: Vanishing PointBritish Social AthleteThree Step EndeavourHopscotch To VictoryReminiscences of Backward FutureOut of Water.


British Social Athlete
Image: Ian Mutter

Sounds, images, performances and games are the material of the projects that will activate and engage people in the East Regions for all the summer, exploring art outside traditional contexts, invading public spaces to make them more accessible, and surprising, involving and amusing participants.

We can’t wait to move East!

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