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Raise Money for Ramen: Support Artist Yarrow Slaps’ New Book

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Calling all ramen heads, creative types, chefs, or any other type of noodle enthusiasts!  Local painter Yarrow Slaps (of SWIM Gallery) has launched a GoFundMe campaign for his new book RAMEN FOREVER, an artist’s guide to ramen.   This avante-garde cookbook is an illustrated love letter to ramen and an overall observation of ramen culture.  Learn more about the project below:

Instant ramen recipe from artist Kristofferson San Pablo (@hikristofferson)

Hi Yarrow.  Why do you like ramen so much?
The funny thing is, I’m not sure how much I love ramen.  I’ve had some really great ramen, but I can’t front like I’m the everyday type… But, I think that to me, it’s about respect, and I respect ramen to the utmost!  Ramen to me is like a martial art form from overseas that was brought to America. Its masters want you to know the tradition and authenticity of it.

Our Bay Area readers may know you as an artist, curator, or rapper, so why did you decide to make a book?
I had always wanted to curate an art show about ramen, and somehow the art show became a show on paper.  That morphed and turned into what it is now. CRAZY!

I think it was about proving to myself that this is something I could do.  I love food and cooking– when I go to the book stores and look at cookbooks, I always feel like the “art” aspect of these books could use an alternative.

I checked out a book called The Adventures of Fat Rice and ever since then, the ramen book dream really took form.

Ramen recipe from artist Maya Fuji (@fuj1kenobe)

Tell me about a challenge you faced while working on the book?
After 8 months, I had only received about 30 artworks.  I was trying to paint, live, curate and I started to think that the book would be a wash.  But, I talked to someone who told me to “finish what you start.”  That piece of advice really changed my perception.  As a creative, it was just about harnessing my efforts and letting those passionate bursts of ramen bookmaking energy stay consistent. LOL.
I have got so many “no” emails that you wouldn’t believe, but I will finish the book.  All the artists and people that are a part of this project is enough motivation in itself to get it done.

You just got back from a trip to Japan, any major takeaways on ramen culture out there?
The ramen chefs seem to have figured out their purposes in life and there’s no question about their authentic approach to giving you the best experience you could have.  I just love to see people doing them and trying to be the best at their craft!  In Japan, I saw people executing their dreams– very organized, humble, respectful, peaceful and diligent.

Artist contribution from photographer Kate Dash (@been.milky)

Your ramen book has recipes from ramen-loving artists and illustration from over 85 contemporary artists.  Can you tell me more about the pages in the book?
Readers can expect to see a cookbook with about 20x times the art they are used to seeing.  And from young emerging contemporary artists.  It’s really a cookbook-meets-art book!  They can read chef interviews to find out more about the ramen that they enjoy slurping.  My hope is that it’s a fun book to look at, but also one that you can learn a lot from.

What is the wildest artist recipe in the book?
I like Gary Paintin‘s SoundCloud Soup! It’s Double coup style and leaned out.

What are some of your favorite ramen spots in the Bay Area?
Mensho, Taishoken, Marafuku Ramen, Hawker Fare, and Ramen Shop (in Oakland). 

Who are your favorite ramen chefs, both the Bay Area and abroad?
I got to go with all the chefs in the book: Yoshihiro Sakaguchi (@Ramen.Chef), Ramen Hero @Ramen.Hero, and Ramen Culture (@Ramen_Culture).


Interview with Brian MacDuckston (@ramenadventures)

Thanks Yarrow!  Anything else you want to add?
I just hope y’all like the book and hope y’all finish what you start! 




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Kirsten Chen

Kirsten Chen

@kirstensly bay area art enthusiast and writer

i'm trying to be as famous as the spice girls