The McLaren Vale Sea and Vines Festival’s Label Art Dinner is Mr Squiggle meets Art Attack with a dash of Mad Men and a lot of wine.
On June 10, a group of diners will front up to the Stump Hill Gallery for a three-course meal from chef Robert Yates of Clarion Hotel Soho. As they eat, they’ll decide on a name and design a label for a De Lisio wine.
Fleurieu illustrator John Draper will sketch the ideas as they’re shouted across the room. He says it’s a whole lot of boozy fun. “People start out relatively quiet but by the time the main course arrives they’re pretty well up and running.”
Winemaker Tony De Lisio will guide the brainstorming process and talk increasingly enthusiastic “artists” through four premium wine-tastings. As the evening progresses, so too will the label concept.
“We try to plan what will happen, but when you’ve got a big group of people in front of you and they’re shouting ideas, you can’t predict what type of design will emerge,” he says. “No one really talks about the development of this part of the product. It can be a lot of fun coming up with ideas, [and having] arguments with the designer [about] whether it’ll work when it gets to the printing plates.”
The final design will be used on a new-release cleanskin. Last year’s inaugural event resulted in the label Briar Tuck and The Duellist.
“Tony is the client, I’m the art department,” says Draper. “The creative department is this hotbed of guests. It’s a bit like mustering cats, especially when they all start singing.”
The Label Art Dinner will be held at 7pm on June 10 at Stump Hill Gallery, McLaren Vale. Tickets are $150 and include a six-pack of wine.