Spoerri emerged as a visual artist around 1960, as a member of the Nouveaux Réalistes, exhibiting relief sculptures he called “tableaux-pièges”. These are tabletops with glued-down objects.
In the ‘60s and early ‘70s, he opened up an eatery in Düsseldorf called Restaurant Spoerri. Each night, he captured the leftovers from one of the tables to create his 'tableaux-pièges', or 'trap pictures'.
Food and art have a long history together, and not only because artists have depicted food or used it as a medium in their work. The modern art café had its beginnings in late nineteenth-century Paris and Vienna, when the artists who gathered over coffee or spirits began to attract the public - a fan base aspiring to the bohemian and, later, avant-garde style of life. (RA magazine)