Food for Thought, is a brand identity project that touches upon cultural and social issues faced by immigrants who wish to seek a better life in Australia. I have also highlighted the importance of practicing multiculturalism as it enables a sense of belonging to different cultures whilst being a part of society. I believe in a society which promotes inclusivity in cultures and not exclusivity; where belonging to a culture entitles you to no greater or lesser privilege than anyone else. My purpose for this project is to educate individuals on the misleading model of multiculturalism where it only is practiced through the displays and consumption of differences in cuisine, clothing, and music and customs. The assumptions that each group has its own distinctive customs ignores processes of cultural adaptation and integration, as well as ignoring the emerging cultural commonalities. It also neglects issues of political and economic inequality thereby potentially reinforcing the perception of minorities as eternally “other.”
I have focused on the consumption of food as it is the most conventional surroundings in which cultural encounters can be recreated. This project takes in the form of a menu, a poster, coasters, food stamps, coupon and order slip with hopes that when one were to encounter and consume culture, the surprising element of the bold red text used to outline the menu items accompanied by fun, decorative illustrations serve to educate them on multiculturalism in the process. I wanted the food brand identity idea to act as reminders of the lives of individuals indirectly caught in the political and economic injustice.
Multiculturalism means to cultivate and educate those living in a society that everyone belongs to multiple cultures. What it should symbolise is a sense of belonging where you are entitled to no greater or lesser privilege than anyone else, total inclusivity rather than exclusivity. It is where cultures converge and overlap to celebrate both cultural differences and the collective human experience.
Unfortunately, the model in which multiculturalism is portrayed is the consumption of differences in cuisine, clothing, and music, where the intention is to encourage people to share their customs. This, however, assumes that each group has its own distinctive customs and ignores processes of cultural adaptation and diversity, as well as emerging cultural commonalities. It further neglects the issues of political and economic inequality thereby potentially reinforcing the perception of minorities as permanently “other”.
Within this ethical core, it makes clear, the positive aims promoted in this movement by fostering social understanding, inclusion, affirmation, and harmony in a pluralistic world. Through representation, we can aim to amplify and assimilate these marginalised voices and highlight the richness and beauty of their traditional cultures.