This project is the result of a collaboration between Chocolataria Equador and the visual research and pedagogical platform Illustration School. It uses Porto Botanic Gardens to explore the intersection between the experimentation of new flavours and how these can generate new visual narratives. From edible plants to fictional botanics, this series of limited edition chocolate-publications is the consequence of the investigative work developed by four illustrators and artists: Alexandra Rafael, Emma Löfström, Sofia Neto and Karen Lacroix. The design and illustrations for this limited edition reflect the journeys created through worlds of beauty and attraction, eccentric smells mirrored by contrasting colours in relation to flavours such as physalis, calendula, wild rose, kumquat, hibiscus, jasmine or poppy seeds.

The launch was on the 8th June at Rua do Dr. Sousa Viterbo 101, Porto, Portugal

Dark Chocolate: Aloe vera, Calendula & Pink salt
Dark Chocolate: Cinnamon, Raspberry & Hibiscus
White chocolate: Physalis & Poppy seeds
White Chocolate: Jasmine & Red pepper
Milk chocolate: Wild rose & Cardamon
Milk Chocolate: Kumquat & Dates

Este projecto é o resultado de uma colaboração entre a Chocolataria Equador e a plataforma de investigação visual e pedagogia Illustration School. Utiliza o Jardim Botânico do Porto para explorar a intersecção entre a experimentação de novos sabores e a forma como estes podem gerar novas narrativas visuais. Desde plantas comestíveis a botânica fictícia, esta série limitada de embalagens-publicação é consequência do trabalho investigativo desenvolvido por quatro ilustradoras e artistas: Alexandra Rafael, Emma Löfström, Sofia Neto e Uncanny Editions. O design e ilustração desta edição limitada reflecte os percursos criados entre mundos de beleza e atracção, cheiros excêntricos reflectidos por cores contrastantes em relação a sabores tais como o de físalis, calêndula, rosa, quincã, hibisco, jasmim ou semente de papoula.

Equador Founders
Maria Teresa BarrosAlmeida
Celestino Fonseca

Participating artists
Alexandra Rafael, printmaker, Portugal.
Emma Löfström, illustrator, Sweden.
Sofia Neto, illustrator, Portugal.
Karen Lacroix, illustrator & publisher Uncanny Editions, Canada.

Alexandra Rafael is a printmaking artist based in Porto, Portugal. She holds an MA in Drawing and Printmaking from the School of Fine Arts of the University of Porto, where she developed research about transfer processes to printmaking surfaces. Since then she has been participating in several exhibitions and artistic residencies around the country.

Emma Löfström is from Uppsala, Sweden, and is a visual artist based between Stockholm and London, graduated from the Royal College of Art (2009) and Central Saint Martins College of Art (2007). Emma creates works on paper, installations and moving image that focus on the relationship between natural and human history. Löfström’s work considers the structuring of nature, and investigates the systems of myth and meaning that shape our understanding of surrounding ecologies. With a particular interest in ecocriticism, biology and anthropology, Löfström is looking at representation and concepts of nature, rethinking the ways in which we regard non-human worlds. Whilst exploring drawing as a way of thinking beyond the word, her elaborately detailed and multi-layered images fluctuate between an indeterminate past and fictions of an inhabitable future, from the factual to the invented, from reason to the open-ended.

Karen Lacroix is a Canadian illustrator, designer and publisher based in Porto, Portugal. She taught visual narratives from 2009–2014 at Richmond University (UK) and works for an eclectic range of clients such as Bright Ivy, English Touring Opera, Saffron Hall, Bishopsgate Institute, among others. After concluding an MA in Visual Communication at the Royal College of Art, she founded Uncanny Editions, an illustration publisher and studio exploring different modes of publication practice, collaborating with institutions such as the National Portrait Gallery, The Photographers’ Gallery and X Marks the Bökship. Her work is represented in collections such as MoMA (US), University College London, London College of Communication (UK), Serralves Foundation and Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation (PT), among others. She is the founder of the Illustration School EU, a nomadic pedagogical platform that investigates the expanded field of illustration and is co-director of the design research centre Shared Institute.

Sofia Neto has an MA in Comics from EESI in Angoulême and graduated in Multimedia from the School of Arts of the University of Porto. She conducted character development and comics courses at the latter school and is presently a professor at ESAG. She teaches comics and graphic narratives courses at Centro de Arte in S. João da Madeira, and drawing at Clube de Desenho in Porto. She is part of the Organizing Committee for the International Illustration Meeting of S. João da Madeira and of the Educational Service at Núcleo de Arte da Oliva. Published in the anthology QCDA#2000 (2014) by Chili Com Carne and Ruru Comix, she is co-editor of the comics magazine Carne e Osso since 2015. She has two published works by Mundo Fantasma, Down Below (2015) and Eco (2016), Bizarras (2017) by Bedeteca de Beja and the graphic novel Cicatriz (2018) by Polvo. She was awarded with the Geraldes Lino Award and she has exhibited her work at Mundo Fantasma and at the XIII FIBDB.