Grant Achatz for Time Magazine’s Top 100

This week’s Time magazine covers The World’s Most Influential People and Chef Grant Achatz is one of them. When my agency asked if I would like to prop-style and work with Grant Achatz and photographer Martin Schoeller, I was thrilled to be a part of the mix.

The 28 + chefs working in the Alinea kitchen moved fluidly like silent stage hands, all knowing their individual role, task, and how to preform around one another seamlessly. Watching them all with their quiet focus and orchestration was fascinating.

Let’s make it clear here,  I’m not a foodie.  But I appreciate good food and anyone who dares to be a modern, if not a postmodern, forward thinker. This chef is testing how we think of food, cocktails, and experience dining. Grant Achatz’s new restaurant, Next, takes you to Paris 1906 with the current menu and then down the road to another time and place in the world for their Next menu. That is, if you can get your hands on tickets.

For the headshot with Grant we used liquid nitrogen to harden up the prawn in order to fix them onto his chef’s jacket, further styling it’s tentacles. For the chalkboard shot I copied on the board some scientific diagrams and we then propped Grant with a live pheasant and then later a dead pheasant, as if he were opening up it’s wings like a book. The pheasant here exemplifying nature is indeed by design, which brings me to mention Achatz’s other new spot, The Aviary.

Regardless of when I will have an opportunity to experience Paris 1906 or the avant-guard not-so-cocktails, these projects and Grant Achatz certainly have a following.

Dive here to read the full article written by Grant’s mentor, Thomas Keller of the French Laundry, in Time Magazine.

Check out the globe-trotting and imaginative Martin Schoeller talk about shooting three of the top 100 behind the scenes here.