Yujie is currently completing a short internship at Salty Studio, whilst finishing her MA in Design Expanded Practice at Goldsmiths University, London. She's been helping us work on finding supplies for our workshops, conducting research, as well as providing assistance with our Edible Words podcast. Find out more about her below!
Hi Yujie, where are you from and what did you study?
I’m from a small town in Yunnan, China. My hometown is famous for beautiful landscapes, flowers, multi-cultures, and tea. I have a background in Industrial design where I learned to make products using different tools and materials.
How did you end up at Salty Studio?
I was looking at food design studios in London to work at and to learn more about food design. When I saw Salty studio, I was really interested in the concept of experiencing food using all our five senses. It has been something I’ve been working on and wanting to explore more about. Looking at the diverse projects Maud has worked on; I was really looking forward to exploring what food design is through different mediums and ways of knowing.
Screen is a tea set caddy inspired by the peacock fanned out tail structure, designed by Yujie
What does food design mean to you?
Food design means exploring, re-understanding food and our relationship with food using creative methods.
If you were a type of pasta, which one would you be?
Yunnan small pot rice noodle soup
Yunnan rice noodle soup (source)
My favourite restaurant is a home base vegetarian kitchen in Yunnan, and it requires you to reserve a week before. They make customised full course meal, and they don’t tell their customers what their menu is going to be. Each course was very delicate and heartily made and the whole experience was just extraordinary.
Which designers/people inspire you?
Since I was young, I’ve always looked up to a Chinese dancer Liping Yang. Her dance connects people, culture, tell stories and brings the whole universe together. My other two favourite artists are American artist James Turrell who works with light and space and Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson who is known for large-scale installation art that uses light, water, air, and temperature to enhance the viewer’s experience.
Left to right: Olafur Eliasson, James Turrell, Liping Yang
Growing up I did not have the habit of looking at cookbooks, but I like to watch food channels on YouTube and my favourite is Marion’s kitchen.
What gift did you recently give to someone?
I made a strawberry jelly cheesecake for my flatmate for her birthday.
What future trends would like to see happening in the next few years?
I hope in the next few years there will be more food design studios in China and more people will pay attention to the food system as a whole and the sustainability of our food system in relation to our everyday life.