Social Soups is a project for the aesthetics of social activities in the urban area with a certain regard for the social implications of food and farming.


Social Soups is an art and design project related to food. The multifaceted project aims at enriching sustainably food security, consumption and social alliances. It aims to enhance the quality of life for individuals and communities by providing access to fresh, locally-sourced produce and to satisfy the need for beauty as sustenance for the soul. Since 2020, Social Soups strives to inspire a healthier and more equitable society through its initiatives. Activities range from designed objects and art installations to living and working design, as well as art performances.

Social Soups brings in creativity, high-tech, low-tech, experience, craftsmanship, nature, knowledge, and intuition.

Social Soups uses aesthetics to promote social transformation, with food and food growing as its core elements. It merges art and design within the unique cultural and social context of urban areas. The projects include aspects of food, its origins, its relation to science, and the environment, while also raising awareness of relevant socio-political matters.

The activities of Social Soups use various techniques and artistic expressions to address significant topics related to nutrition. These range from food as a means of survival to having a good life, and from food as a condition of community building to productivity. Food nourishes both our bodies and our souls, so the preparation of a “Social Soup” involves diverse artistic operations and design productions to create interpretations in the social, cultural, economic, environmental, and political spheres.

Social Soups collaborates with communities, artists, designers, industry, and researchers to design parts of daily life.

The interweaving of different cultural approaches, issues, and fates are like a soup in which diverse ingredients must amalgamate to offer everyone the chance to be “nourished”. Food can create strong, multi-sensory connections with audiences and the local area. Food not only nourishes our bodies but also enriches our minds. When used as a tool for artistic expression, it can be a way for audiences to learn about cultural and traditional aspects. Furthermore, a strong relationship is created with the audience, who become actively involved in the artistic and design processes. 

Public engagement is a core issue of Social Soups aiming to address artistic activities directly to the citizen as audience as well as an active participant to increase awareness of social justice and foster critical regionalism.

for more information go to the site

Social Soups was founded in 2015 by Rachela Abbate and Maria Rebecca Ballestra as an open platform project with an artist residency at its core. After Maria Rebecca Ballestra left in 2018, Rachela Abbate resumed the project in early 2020, shifting the focus to design and urban architecture to extend its social impact.