Japanese Wagyu ‘beef art’ recreates famous global landscapes + VIDEO

Jon Condon, 27/01/2023


SOME of the world’s best-known geographic landmarks have been recreated as sculptured landscape scenes using a highly unusual, if not quirky medium – marbled Japanese Wagyu beef.

Colorado’s Grand Canyon, Central Australia’s Ayres Rock and the Pyramids of Giza are all accurately and convincingly portrayed in the meat sculptures, created by Japanese artists in celebration of the Miyazaki Prefecture’s great success at last year’s colourful ‘Wagyu Olympics’ livestock show in Japan.

As the images and video accompanying this item show, the level of detail in the food art is extraordinary, and convincing to the eye. The Mt Fuji project, for example, includes streaks of white Wagyu marbling that resemble snow near the extinct volcano’s crater.

The series, titled World Heritage by Miyazaki, was entirely constructed of pieces and fragments of raw and cooked Wagyu beef arranged in creative ways to resemble the natural wonders around the world.

The original piece of food art, re-creating Japan’s famous Mt Fuji, was viewed online more than one million times.

“With this video, we hope to further raise the profile of Miyazaki Wagyu and invite people around the world to experience the highest quality Wagyu beef,” the project’s backers explained. Miyazaki Wagyu beef was chosen for the official party held as part of last year’s Academy Awards ceremony.

Food Art with special attention to detail

More than 110kg of raw material was used for the unusual project. At an average value of say, A$200/kg, it means around $22,000 was invested to create the sculptures. There was no word of whether the items were suitable for human consumption after the project was completed.

Various meat cuts and arrangements were tested to ensure that they truly looked like the world heritage sites, the sculptors said.

“In order to take into account the texture and even the expression of the meat for creating the miniatures, we thought out the characteristics of each piece of meat and its compatibility with the landscape, repeated trial and error in terms of the degree of cooking, cooking method and lighting, and finished with the utmost care and creativity,” they said.

  • For the Giza pyramids, the meat was carefully cut so that each block resembling the original sandstone would line up nicely, and not become uneven.
  • For Ayers Rock, the artists tried various cuts that would be suitable for the distinctive sandstone monolith.
  • The Grand Canyon, various combinations of cuts and colours were used to create the distinctive cliff faces and gorge landscape.
  • For Mt Fuji, the beef was arranged to show the difference in expression between the top and the foot of the mountain, especially the ancient lava flows, while carefully exploring the balance of the fatty parts.

About Zenkyo

The Competitive Exhibition of Wagyu, also known as Zenkyo or the Wagyu Olympics, is a national cattle and beef competition held every five years in Japan.

Click here to view Beef Central’s earlier story from this colourful and ceremony-filled event, held last year near Kagoshima.

Japan’s Miyazaki Prefecture’s Wagyu was proclaimed the winner of the highest Prime Minister’s Award at 12th Zenkyo in October, the fourth consecutive such award earned by the prefecture.














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