On Friday, TV chef Gizzi Erskine is going to broadcast video footage from inside her guts to an auditorium and soundtrack it with live jazz. Can we just pause to enjoy that sentence for a second? Okay, thanks.
It’ll all happen in an auditorium in Guy’s Hospital, with footage provided by a tiny SynMed pillcam which Erskine will swallow, and which will then stream images as it moves along her alimentary canal. The UK’s leading gastroenterologist will give a talk and the resulting pictures will be used to illustrate a book called ‘Memoirs of a Stomach’, an 1853 diet book told from the perspective of someone’s insides.
Why? Ask madcap experimental food duo Bompas & Parr, who came up with the idea for this event (called Journey to the Centre of the Gut). ‘Food photography is so pervasive: the most photographed thing on Instagram is food,’ says Sam Bompas. ‘But of course the food we’re all looking at is a very, very sanitised version. I wanted to show people the other side of food. The reality.’
Fortunately, it’s not going to be too real, with footage confined to 25 minutes of the camera’s early journey around Erskine’s digestive system. ‘Yeah, when they asked me to be involved, my first question was “Oh God! Do we have to film when it comes out?”’ chuckles Erskine, posing in Time Out’s studio with a tiny camera in her mouth. Which clearly marks her out as a woman with a lot of guts. And on Friday we’ll get to see them.
Journey to the Centre of the Gut with Bompas & Parr. Fri Mar 14, 6.30pm, New Hunt’s House, Guy’s Hospital. Tickets cost £10 from bompasandparr.com.