The Watermelon Issue

by Kitty Drake in September 2021
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Art & design Food & drink

Club Sandwich has released a special issue they’re calling an “Hors D’oeuvre”. The previous four issues of the French food magazine have been thick and extravagant: the ‘chocolate’ issue, for example, was 176 pages long, with every article printed in both French and English, and different illustrations specially commissioned for each language.

In contrast, this latest edition, themed around the watermelon, is a slip of magazine. Just 68 pages long, it is image-only, and so slim its binding is simple saddle stitch.

Initially this is a bit of a disappointment: part of the charm of Club Sandwich, which is one of my favourite magazines of all time, is that the articles inside are excellent; at once eccentric and deeply researched. (One piece in the chocolate issue, for example, told the story of Ferrero Rocher’s Michele Ferrero, and how he was so obsessed with rocks he went on a pilgrimage every year to a certain stone that had apparently been blessed by the Virgin Mary.)

But, as Club Sandwich makes clear, this is an hors d’oeuvre, not a main course. Once you accept this fact, The Watermelon Issue becomes a delight. Seeing 68 pages of different artworks inspired by just one fruit is odd and joyful. One of the most striking spreads, a photograph by Farah Al Qasimi, shows a woman eating a chunk of fruit off the tip of a butcher’s knife. Another, by Tatzu Nishi shows a man doing a headstand in a salad bowl.

Below we’ve photographed some of our favourite spreads.

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