A metaphorical question tends to arise as our judges parse through the hundreds of photograph entries for our annual Peeps Diorama Contest. With as much time and thought as participants spend on creations, have Peeps dioramas become more than a craft project made with lovable holiday treats? Could they be considered works of art?
This year the question feels more pertinent than ever, as many participants turned to a variety of artwork for inspiration. Semi-finalist Mark Rivetti created a magical rendition of Georges Seurat’s painting “Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte,” which brought smiles to judges’ faces for its beautiful use of color and attention to detail.
Matthew Smith, 32, of Falls Church, selected a post-impressionist style painting as his muse. His diorama, “Vincent van Peep Self Portrait” mimics Vincent Van Gogh’s self portraits, using different shades of Peeps and Mike and Ikes to create his likeness.
Jasmine Wu, Renee Huffert and Alison Gaynor chose Pablo Picasso’s curvilinear “Woman with Yellow Hair” as their inspiration, using the uniform shapes of the Peeps to “add a contrast to the roundness and unpredictability of the outline of the woman,” according to their submission.
Toni San Miguel, Logan Weir, and Rosalyn Xu hand painted their replica of the Japanese color woodblock print, “The Great Wave,” by Katsushika Hokusai.
Kathleen Canedo looked to two of her most beloved artists for her pop art piece. “Keith Haring and Annie Leibovitz have been two of my favorite artists for as long as I can remember – so I naturally love this photo she took of him.”
And in a tribute to the underground world of street art, Michelle Kim and Neel Kaul of Germantown created an homage to graffiti artist Banksy.
Are Peeps transcending the world of snack-turned-craft to become fine art? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.