Caro Jesse / Food Artist

Immersive experiences, sensory food & flora installations, visual stories, concept development, art direction, collaborations // STUDIO: Photography studio & location at The Bijou, Cape Town.

Petrichor – The Smell of Rain – Venice

The rain falls – layering aromas into steam to make it airborne.

An immersive sensory performance about petrichor, the smell of rain.
Designed for Venice Food Design Week 2018, I created a piece with four walls of film, sound, layers of aromas and herbal smoke for a sensory journey.
The theme of the show was VANITAS. I offered a chance to reconnect to nature through petrichor, away from mans destruction of the earth.

Enter into the beehive

TEMPEST – Chef & Artist: Caro de Waal – South Africa

Film, steel, brass, copper, cotton, water, oil, honey, truffle, chanterelle, porcini, South African wild rosemary.
Sound composition: Alessandro Gigli on Synth Flute.
Please note: If you have a bee allergy, you may experience some discomfort.

The bees are crawling all over you.


The VANITAS of contemporary man has caused a disconnection from nature and the delicate balance in the natural order of the world. He is gorging on the earth.

This installation is leading one, through the senses, highlighting the juxtaposition of where we are now at odds with nature, to where we should be, and where we once were, in harmony with nature.

“I feel that bees are a representation of the perfect balance of nature. The increasing fervor of the bees expresses the alarm I feel, as man continues to poison their survival through the spraying of pesticides and the gluttonous desecration of honey.

As man cannot live without the assistance of bees to pollinate his crops, he will sabotage his existence in a sickly sweet self-destruction.

The storm that follows is a chance to reconnect to nature as a whole. As the animals we truly are.

The smell of rain and the a priori feeling that comes with petrichor (the term for the smell of rain) is embedded deep within us as human animals. It calls for us to awaken to our primal connection in harmony with nature. It signifies coming awakening, growth and survival.”

The artist, as ’rain-maker’ performs a ceremony with heat, aroma, edible essences and herbal smoke that releases her own personal experience of petrichor, her instinctual connection with food and drawing sustenance from the African bush.

The mask is a connection to Carnevale and is made with African guinea fowl feathers.

“The guinea fowl is a bird that is symbolic of human effort at survival” a quote from transcribed tapes recorded by Credo Mutwa, one of Southern Africa’s most celebrated Sangomas or witchdoctors.

Pulled honeycomb with fynbos honey from South Africa is given to the guest as an offer of a memory.

Pulled honeycomb, a delicate wafer of sweetness made with fynbos honey in a copper bowl by Conrad Hicks.