Just obsessed with cakes, Caitlin Freeman started out wanting to be an art photographer. One day, during a trip to the SFMOMA, Freeman fell in love with frequent pastry-painter Wayne Thiebaud’s Display Cakes, a 1963 oil painting of a trio of ready-to-eat cakes. So her project started as a cake-with-your-coffee concept, and one of the first Modern Art desserts she put on the menu was an homage to Thiebaud.
Over the past several years, Freeman has made a name for herself by crafting desserts inspired by the great works of Modern Art on display at SFMOMA. She sells these edible art bites at the Blue Bottle Coffee bar, the cafe she and her husband, Blue Bottle founder James Freeman, inside the museum. From Piet Mondrian (the cafe’s most popular item) to Roy Lichtenstein she has a full menu of desserts that gets updated as often as new art exhibits rotate through the museum.