70 x 7 The Meal act XXVI is the 26th act in Lucy + Jorge Orta’s ongoing banquets, taking place at the Fundació Joan Miró in support the ArtAids Foundation, to raise public consciousness and to encourage involvement in artistic projects aimed at preventing and fighting Aids.
The artists were inspired by the work of Padre Rafael Garcia H. (1909-1990) who initiated a series of benefit banquets to set in motion a major urban social development program entitled El minuto de Dios . The artist’s based their banquets on the symbol seven, which represents infinity in numerous ancestral cultures and in particular the biblical signification ad infinitum (Luke 17,4). Since their first banquet (act I) staged over a decade ago with just 14 guests, and thanks to the playful concept: 7 people invite 7, who invite 7 forever, the artists have now gathered together hundreds of thousands of people from all walks of life to network, to stimulate ideas and debate humanitarian issues such as the fight against Aids, and to inspire those who are dedicated to making a difference to our society.
On the 8th September 2011, a dinner for 77 guests will be staged at the Fundació Joan Miró in Barcelona, a fragment of which is exhibited in the exhibition You Are Not Alone.
The table dressed for 7 guests on exhibition is comprised of a set of limited edition Royal Limoges porcelain plates with 7 different motifs: the artichoke: a symbol of the heart; the spectrum: contextual colours created by the artists representing specific places or events that have moved them; and the graphic measures: proposes different levels to gauge social behaviour.
The printed table linens are hand-embroidered by Fine Cell Work, a charity that rehabilitates prisoners by giving them the opportunity to earn and save money and rebuild their lives through craft and achievement.
The artists create memorable events and relational artworks that infiltrate the daily ritual of dining; objects charged with meaning that build on the legacy of the thousands of encounters that have already taken place through 70 x 7.