Norma Listman was an Oakland, California-based chef and artist, now residing in Mexico City, where she spent her youth. Her practice both as a chef and artist is dictated by her heritage, she is most interested in traditional cooking methods and the historical periods of Mexican gastronomy. Listman’s passion for the preservation of her culture and her father’s life-long work with maize have ignited her interest for working with native varieties of the crop. Her interest in the preservation of traditional values demands the closest attention to local farming procedures.
She began her career in restaurants in the front of the house. She managed nationally acclaimed Camino Restaurant in Oakland before deciding to follow her passion and become a professional chef. She was mentored in the kitchen by Chefs Anthony Strong of Delfina in San Francisco and Russell More of Camino in Oakland.
Included in her past culinary and artistic practice are Paraiso, an early twentieth century salon-inspired dinner series held at her Victorian home; A Sors, a historical-food performance commissioned by the Andy Warhol foundation held in commemoration of the beheading of the Austrian-placed Mexican emperor Maximilian; The Alchemy of Dreams, a performance-dinner inspired by the artist Remedios Varo; and a dinner for Museo Experimental El Eco in Mexico City for their 60th anniversary.