"Four-Wheeled Feast"

By Kirsten Henri
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 0 | Posted Aug. 17, 2005

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Through Sept. 2. Airspace, 4013 Chestnut St. 504.975.5077. www.voodooartist.com

Let us first say that we're totally jealous of Lee Tusman's new multimedia exhibit "Four-Wheeled Feast," which chronicles University City's vibrant food truck scene using quilting, photography and email. Jealous in a "Why didn't I do that instead of getting drunk on cheap sauvignon blanc night after night?" kind of way. The UC trucks aren't your average roach coaches. They run the culinary gamut from sandwiches to soul food and Middle Eastern fare. Yue Kee, a Chinese lunch truck that rules the southwest corner of 38th and Walnut, recently merited a full review from the Inquirer. It's high time someone undertook a full-scale documentation of their charms. Upon meeting the 23-year-old Tusman, all our jealousy dissipates in the aura of his buzzing goodwill. He's a friendly whirl of energy and curiosity, eager to show us around his studio. Currently in the 40th Street Artist-in-Residence program, Tusman is also the sole designer, creator and proprietor of VoodooArtist, a "remixed" clothing company. "I make mashups, Frankenshirts," he smiles, waving a shirt that's really a sewn-together construction of two separate T-shirts. He also makes quilts, but not the teatime variety. A sample hangs on the wall-a patchwork of Crayola-hued T-shirts, emblazoned with logos both random and anonymous, a mysterious family reunion and the instantly recognizable "FRANKIE SAY RELAX!" "Four-Wheeled Feast" includes a quilt that's a representative grid of University City fitted with photo-transfer appliques of the food trucks in their respective locations. Around the room are photographs of the trucks and various emails from people Tusman contacted through Chowhound and Craigslist for tips and companionship along the way. (One of the funniest recounts the experience of a woman who had never eaten at a lunch truck before.) Tusman also kindly provides a handy spreadsheet for visitors describing all of the trucks, their locations and recommended dishes-something we're surprised no one has thought to do before, including us.

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