Monday, August 10, 2009

Potlikker Film Festival: Athens

On Saturday, August 22, the Southern Foodways Association will host their annual Potlikker Film Festival in Athens from 6-9 pm at Cine. The University of Georgia Press has collaborated with SFA on books including CORNBREAD NATION 4 and a Southern Foodways Association cookbook forthcoming in 2010.

The festival celebrates food documentaries as well as local food culture; participants receive a shot of potlikker with cornbread as they walk in the door. Previous venues have included Atlanta, Houston, D.C., and Birmingham. While this year’s festival films have not yet been announced, the films screened at last year’s festival, in Oxford, Mississippi, investigated the longitudinal arc of food: one followed the contents of Las Vegas buffet tables from source through disposal (scraps eaten by 6000 pigs); another documented the path from harvest to table of a single acre of corn. A list of SFA documentaries to date conveys a feel for the genre.

The SFA’s oral history project, intended to further their mission of “documenting and celebrating the diverse food cultures of the American South,” includes interviews with two Athens “guardians of the tradition”: Dexter Weaver of Weaver D’s and Angelish Wilson of Wilson’s Soul Food. Both these local food personalities will provide food for Potlikker: Athens, along with Hugh Acheson of the Five & Ten, Peter Dale of The National, and others. Beverages will be provided by Terrapin Beer, and Coleman Barks will play the harmonica.

Tickets, which include food, drink, and entertainment, are available online from the Southern Foodways Alliance.