Chef’s Hand Project is an artistic representation of the cook’s trade, based on its purest, most basic and elemental tool: the hand. Pictures of a chef's left hand. To use the hand as opposed to the face, to focus the pride on the work, not appearance. It’s the work and not the person that should be praised, as the hand represents someone’s work and the face represents a person. They are the modest but fundamental parts of the chef. We need all our senses to cook, but at the end it’s in the hands, they are the ones that do the job, they are the authors of what the mouth wants to taste, what the nose wants to smell. Hands are used to greet someone, you hold hands with others to make a human circle. Each hand here represents something: a place, a memory, an ingredient.
This project started in a basement prep kitchen in Edmonton, Canada. In those days I was a globetrotter, starting again somewhere new every 5 months or so, in a quest to have a fuller life. With no windows to distract me, I saw a lot of beauty in the work, in the products and the tasks I was doing. The solitude, the light, the artisanal nature of everything I was doing, from picking herbs to washing the sink clean of leftover home-made ricotta. It helped me strip down my profession to its core, it was a great reminder of why I was drawn to it. The lesson of humility was not only to crack 400 eggs and separate the yolks from the whites, but to find beauty in it. Those days allowed me to see how basic this craft is, how mundane, and how much it matters to feel that way all along, whether cooking for a queen or for your lover on a Sunday morning.
Carlos Macías(Mexican, b.1985) is a development chef for a restaurant group, a drummer, a writer and photographer. He lives and works in London. Instagram: chochoyote