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Maria Finn 






The Institute for Ecosystem Based Living 

Flora & Fungi Adventures

Sign up below for the irregular, inspirational, every-once-in-a-while newsletter that's part literary, part natural history, and upcoming events.  

Photo by Shelley Alger

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Exploring how human beings can become a keystone species through art, food, science. technology and social practice. 

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SF Bay Area 

A Responsibility to Awe, Dark Matter & Uncertainty, may 3rd, Berkeley

Preserved: Anchovy Workshop, Oakland,April 30th 


Far West Fungi: Santa Cruz Mushroom Festival, Cooking Demonstrations, May 4/5th


Omnivore Books:  Truffle Dog Talk and Demo, SF May 29th 6:30-7:30 PM

Sausalito Center for the Arts: Ecosystem Based Living, Food & Fashion, May 31st

Spaulding Marine Center: Voyages, the Ocean & AI, Sausalito, June 22nd 6-9 PM


18 Reasons: A Wild Dinner, June 26th


Town Hall Seattle: How Wild Foods Inspire Use to Be a Keystone Species, conversation with Riley Starks, June 4th

Book Larder, June 5th, Seattle

Harry's in Seattle, June 6th

Portland, Oregon

Vivienne PDX June 14th 

Homer, Alaska


Flaming Pine Needle Mussels! Stinging Nettle Gnocchi! Cherry Blossom Truffles! With her backwoods bona fides and visionary palate, Maria Finn has taken foraging to the next level. No matter where you live, Forage.Gather.Feast will draw you into a delightful ‘adventure with purpose’ as it unlocks the layers of meaning and deliciousness permeating our woods and coastlines. Your kitchen game will never be the same. Neither will your soul.”

—Rowan Jacobsen, author of Truffle Hound and A Geography of Oysters

“This gorgeous book is a celebration of wild food, foraging, and cultivating connection to the natural world. The recipes inside highlight ingredients from coast to forest and inspire you to get creative, get outside and participate in the surrounding ecosystem; to live a healthier, more pleasurable, and more delicious life.” 

—Emma Teal Privat and Claire Neaton, co-owners of Salmon Sisters and authors of The Salmon Sisters: Feasting, Fishing, and Living in Alaska and The Salmon Sisters: Harvest & Heritage

Speaking Engagements

My talks combine storytelling with concrete ideas and pragmatic takeaways on how nature and good food can teach us to live more regenerative, authentic and joyful lives.

I have  given talks at the SOCAP Conference, Chefs Collaborative, the California Academy of Sciences, SXSW eco, Autodesk Pier 9, among many other places. I have told stories for The Moth Mainstage at the Museo del Barrio in New York City and the Grand Slam at the Castro Theater in San Francisco along with many other venues. 


Truffle Lust & Puppy Love

The first time I smelled a truffle, it reached inside me and made me want it more than anything in the world. That first, intoxicating whiff led me to my Italian truffle dog, Flora Jayne.

Flora Jayne and I travel to wineries for truffle hunting demonstrations, talks and tastings.  As well, I bring the magical world of truffles for companies for talks, tastings and hands on workshops. Flora Jayne can accompany me when appropriate. 

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How Wild Foods Inspire Us to Become a Keystone Species

Our blood carries the same mineral content as the sea, and our skin has similar bacteria to the soil. We are fractals of planet earth and deep down, we crave nature. Wild foods like seaweed, oysters and salmon can teach and inspire us to create regenerative systems not only for food systems, but also in our own professional and personal lives.


SF Climate Designers/SF Climate Week : Be the Oyster

The more we farm shellfish, the better their (and our) environment gets.  Shellfish colonies are considered “Blue carbon” ecosystems as they extract carbon from the water to grow their shells removed from the ocean. Be inspired by these delicious and beneficial creatures.


Stories Told for The Moth

I love telling stories - whether for a full theater like The Castro or The Museo del Barrio or at the small, funky Voodoo Bar in Astoria. Oregon for Fisher Poets or for a community arts festival at Spaulding Marine Works.


Menus as Storytelling

From grazing tables to sit down multi-course dinners, my team and I craft experiences that are inspired by regenerative producers and wild places. Clients include Stochastic Labs, The Center for Humane Technology, MAPS (Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies), Esalen, Gallery 836M, Good People Dinners, The French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Catchlight, The Institute of Contemporary Art SF, Ocean Genome Atlas Project, Odd Salon and many others. I also create onsite and offsite experiences with hands on team building through food.


Intertidal Zone Grazing Table as part of the Above Below Collective of Artists & Scientists raising awareness of disappearing kelp forests.

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Salmon and Circumambulation Dinner in the Redwoods based on the Mount Tam watershed.


Forest centric grazing table for Paul Stamet's Birthday celebration/MAPS fundraiser


Fertile Void & Keeling Curve Dinners designed for The Center for Humane Technology.

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Visit Flora & Fungi Adventures to learn about upcoming wild food and crafting events. Sign up below for the irregular, inspirational, every-once-in-a-while newsletter that's part literary, part natural history, and lists fun stuff to do. 


Articles & Essays

Storytelling & Public Speaking

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 Artist/ Chef Residencies

I was a fellow in the first creative cohort of the Design Science Studio and Living Systems Collaboratory with the Buckminister Fuller Society.  I created an augmented reality Pandemic Menu from Spaceship Earth,  based on wild foods and the philosophy of Buckminister Fuller. I spent 7 months as an Artist-in-Residence at Autodesk, Pier 9 maker space where I created a Wildcrafting map of the San Francisco Bay illustrated by Iris Gottlieb that’s on display at the SF Exploratorium map room. Other residencies include Writing Between the Vines, The Marin Headlands Center for the Arts and Mesa Refuge. 


Fast Company  Welcome To The Brave New World Of The Corporate-Sponsored Artist

Food Tank: Maria Finn: Rethinking Our Relationship with Art, Food, and the Sea

Autodesk Pier 9 Residency Presentation

San Francisco Chronicle: Maria Finn, Dedicated to Using The Whole Fish 

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