Mallory M. and John A. O’Connor Re-Invent the Traditional Cookbook with The Kitchen and the Studio

January 24 17:32 2023
Mallory M. and John A. O'Connor Re-Invent the Traditional Cookbook with The Kitchen and the Studio
The Kitchen and the Studio by Mallory M. and John A. O’Connor is an inviting celebration of food and family that contains beautiful illustrations, photographs and one-of-a-kind recipes.

The Kitchen and the Studio: A Memoir of Food and Art offers a sparkling, imaginative rendition of a traditional cookbook. Part memoir, part art book and part love story, this one-of-a-kind cookbook captures the beauty and essence of artist John A. O’Connor and art historian Mallory M. O’Connor’s loving marriage. The authors met at the University of California, Davis, in 1962 and were married in January 1963. From the beginning, they shared a passion for good food and wine that has continued for almost sixty years. In this unique love story of a creative couple who have always “lived the artist’s life,” John and Mallory O’Connor share their favorite special occasions and recipes along with the places and the people who made them memorable.

My husband John and I decided to collaborate on a project that combines two of our favorite topics: a memoir/cookbook focusing on our dual careers as artists and food-lovers. I wrote the text and John illustrated the various recipes with his own original works of art,” says Mallory M. O’Connor. Both acclaimed artists, Mallory has thirty years’ experience as an educator and arts administrator and is also the award-winning author of eight books. Her husband John, Professor of Art Emeritus, University of Florida, has had 36 solo exhibitions of his art and is included in numerous public and private art collections. Lifelong food and wine enthusiasts, the O’ Connors’ goal in writing The Kitchen and the Studio was to provide a model for gracious living with delectable recipes and menus that offers a blueprint for new ideas and possibilities. “We wanted to share our passion for ‘the good life’ with our readers and reveal the secret of how to ‘ive the artist’s life’ to the fullest.” 

The Kitchen and the Studio is both a memoir of the O’Connors’ life together as artists and teachers, and a collection of the celebrations they shared with family and friends. Over a span of fifty-nine years, their guests have ranged from immediate family members to university colleagues and professional artists. The book itself is also a work of art. It is illustrated with John’s original paintings along with photographs of celebrations and participants.  As a personal history of the O’Connors’ relationship with food, cooking and eating, the book also pays homage to the abundance of nature, reinstating the importance of finding locally and sustainably produced options. In accordance with this, the book offers helpful guides for readers with specific dietary restrictions including ingredient information for each recipe marked with symbols such as V for Vegan, VT for Vegetarian, P for Pescatarian and more.   

The Kitchen and the Studio has been endorsed by some of the most well-renowned experts, authors, and reviewers around the world. Kirkus Media writes, “Mallory and John’s zest for life and all its beautiful, delectable pleasures shines through on every page, as does the couple’s generosity of spirit.” In addition, The Book Pipeline Workshop writes, “[The book] would be a great coffee table book. The photos and the paintings are incredible. The ‘voice’ is reminiscent and romantic and sets the tone of the story.” 

A heartwarming celebration of food and art, The Kitchen and the Studio, published by Atmosphere Press, will be available for sale on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Readers who are looking to expand their palate and reap the physical, emotional and spiritual benefits of cooking and art are encouraged to purchase their copy beginning February 12, 2023: 

About the Authors

Mallory M. O’Connor is an award-winning author and Professor Emerita of Art History at Santa Fe College. She is the author of six published novels as well as two non-fiction books. In addition, Mallory has lectured widely and for the past fifteen years has been a member of the Florida Humanities Council speaker’s bureau. She is active on Facebook and maintains a website that highlights her activities.

John A. O’Connor is an artist, a designer, and an arts administrator with more than forty-five years of experience in art and higher education. John has had 36 solo exhibitions of his paintings. He has received numerous awards and honors. He recently published a book of his digital art works titled White Lies Matter: Decoding American Deceptionalism. John is also active on Facebook and maintains a website of his activities. 

To learn more, please visit: or connect with the authors on Facebook:    

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