Julia: How did you end up in Barcelona and when did you start to cook?
Pepi: I was born in New York City to a French father and Argentinian mother. We moved to Buenos Aires when I was young, and I moved to Brazil on my own when I was 19. I spent two years on a beach called Praia do Rosa, later I moved north to Itacaré and I had my own restaurant. I really started to cook in Brazil – the produce and ingredients are amazing; every fruit is an invitation to a new taste.
JS: Do you consider yourself a chef, an artist, something in between?
PB: I don’t think the classification of our work and in life matters.
JS: Tell me about your upcoming exhibition in Madrid, where will it be and what is the concept?
PB: I am working around the idea that sugar is crap. Everything we consume has sugar even if we don’t want it, and we need to correct this. I will be doing a small installation around this subject at a gallery called Alimentación 30.
JS: Is it important to you that your work is ephemeral?
PB: I like my work to be ephemeral because it allows me to change and explore different universes within food.
JS: You do so many events, as do I. I recently began thinking about what makes an event a “success”: number of people in attendance; the quality of documentation; the energy in the room? Is this something you negotiate with yourself?
PB: I think it depends on two things: the event has to have a nourishing concept that can offer a certain ritual for guests and the guests have to engage. This formula is perfect.
JS: Tell me about your project with Sunday Supper in NYC. Did you find unique challenges in doing your work in New York as opposed to in Spain?
PB: Working with Laila [founder of Sunday Supper] was amazing because we really synched. I found it easier to work in NYC in the sense that the people are more open to new experiences. Everything is more traditional in Spain, and it can be a bit difficult sometimes to propose a new idea on how to approach an event. On the other hand, the produce in Spain is amazing.