Gum Blondes
May 10, 2006 8:46 AM   Subscribe

Gum Blondes Celebrity portraits done in chewed gum. By artist Jason Kronenwald.
posted by grapefruitmoon (31 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
mmm chewy
posted by cavalier at 9:07 AM on May 10, 2006

Though, holy crap, he's been busy these past two years!
posted by cavalier at 9:08 AM on May 10, 2006

They are cool but I wish that he would say who some of them are as they arent always obvious.
posted by deviantlnx at 10:04 AM on May 10, 2006

Kinda creepy. Why are so many of them naked?
posted by OmieWise at 10:05 AM on May 10, 2006

Yeah, that one with Courtney Love(?)'s nipples poking out is a little weird.
posted by borkingchikapa at 10:07 AM on May 10, 2006

What an amazing world this is.
posted by nickyskye at 10:08 AM on May 10, 2006

Lovely bit of lunacy - those crazy artistic types!


- snarky bubblegum reference to people whose primary contribution to the world is looking good

- obvious improvement in technique from the first one in 1996


- annoying bouncing flash interface, what is it about flash that enables creatives to be as trivially annoying as possible?

- superfluous sound effect: basic web design no-no, how can I pretend I'm working instead of wasting time on mefi with these weird noises emanating from my work area?
posted by scheptech at 10:37 AM on May 10, 2006

I wish I could tell they were gum a bit more - maybe it's the flashiness of the site, but it feels just like rendered drawings to me instead of a kind of relief sculpture.
posted by agregoli at 10:41 AM on May 10, 2006

There was a segment on this guy on Unwrapped on Food Network. The guy was really strange, and the pieces looked pretty gross close up.
posted by zsazsa at 10:44 AM on May 10, 2006

Metafilter: Kinda creepy. Why are so many of them naked?
posted by fire&wings at 11:01 AM on May 10, 2006

I'm interested in the genesis of this idea...I guess one day when his porn connection was down, he said oh, I know, I'll make naked pictures of blondes out of chewed gum!
posted by sfts2 at 11:02 AM on May 10, 2006

I'm kind of bummed. I was sort of hoping these were sculptures. I was picturing the guy chewing up a wad of gum and then spitting out a lifelike bust of, say, Britney Spears in its entirety.
posted by Wylie Kyoto at 11:31 AM on May 10, 2006

Better yet if he could chew up Britney Spears and spit out a decent piece of gum!
posted by HuronBob at 11:35 AM on May 10, 2006

Did anyone else notice the line in the Bio page about how he has a "dedicated team of chewers" and "does not chew gum himself unless he must?"

1- How do you get a job as a gum chewer?
2- What do you think the interview would be like?
posted by rmless at 11:52 AM on May 10, 2006

Jason's work is great, an interesting, high concept riff on the disposable nature of pop stardom and beauty. He gave us a print of his Britney portrait as a raffle prize at the Bubblegum Achievement Awards I put on last October, and it was really a striking piece, especially the woodgrain skin.

We were also lucky enough to get an original gum art piece from Ben Harben's Bubblegum Society, a portrait of Lancelot Link, Secret Chimp. Even under glass, it was all glisteny and... chewed!
posted by Scram at 12:08 PM on May 10, 2006

interview question:
"Do you own your own teeth?"
posted by sonofsamiam at 12:11 PM on May 10, 2006

Yeah, that one with Courtney Love(?)'s nipples poking out is a little weird.

That's Debbie Harry. Although I would have thought Love at first too, if I hadn't seen that picture before.
posted by LeeJay at 12:23 PM on May 10, 2006

Kinda creepy. Why are so many of them naked?

There are only 3 out of 17 blondes here that are partially naked; one in a towel.

Cleavage and skin don't really = naked.

Plus, this is the way these blonds look in magazines.

This is actually pretty impressive work. And it's interesting to chart the progress from Gum Blonde One, which does look creepy to most of the others, which are rather amazing.
posted by Rashomon at 12:29 PM on May 10, 2006

All I can think of when I look at these is the Starburst ad
posted by TwoWordReview at 12:41 PM on May 10, 2006

Queen’s University in Kingston must be proud of what he has done with his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree.
posted by Cranberry at 12:43 PM on May 10, 2006

2- What do you think the interview would be like?

"What makes you think you're qualified to be a chewer for this project?"

"Mmmm mmm mmph mmmph!"

"You're hired."
posted by Zinger at 12:59 PM on May 10, 2006

This is giving me horrible flashbacks to the gum jar one of my gradeschool teachers used. He banned gum in his classes, and showed a hideous big jar full of old pieces and saliva, saying if you were caught with a piece you had to put one in and *gag* take one out.
posted by Isabeau Sahen at 2:14 PM on May 10, 2006

...Also, that's a hell of a lot of Britney Spears.
posted by Isabeau Sahen at 2:14 PM on May 10, 2006

When I went to art school (1996-2000, the Maryland Institute, College of Art), there was a guy there doing this exact same thing. Since Kronenwald finished his first bubblegum piece in 1996, I guess the guy at my school was less original than I thought -- or perhaps it's a coincidence. While the idea is amusing, it is also a bit of a one-liner.
posted by edlundart at 3:11 PM on May 10, 2006

That's what they said about PAINT.
posted by sonofsamiam at 3:45 PM on May 10, 2006

I seriously did a search of the site for this and came up with nothing, if someone wants to flag it as a double post I'm down with that.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 5:03 PM on May 10, 2006

Gah. Flash. Yuck. Why do artsy types gravitate towards the horrific mess of Macromedia garbage? Why should I suffer through only being able to see your artwork through some tiny little postage stamp sized 2 inch window because the flash won't resize to the actual size of the browser? Why do I get to put up with nonstandard navigation and the inability to bookmark.
posted by Rhomboid at 5:13 PM on May 10, 2006

a new alternative to those black velvet paintings at Oakland gas stations in the 80s...awesome.
posted by nj_subgenius at 5:14 PM on May 10, 2006

how funny...i just bought a jason mecier piece just today...
posted by sexyrobot at 4:12 AM on May 11, 2006

I went to school with Jason when he just started on those pieces. I remember he came around looking for chewers. He'd give you a pack or three and a sheet of waxed paper to deposit it on. He'd also give you a bunch of different colours, and asked for a variety of colours if you could manage it. I'm astonished and amazed at what he's managed to turn his one-trick idea into. He's a very nice man.

But I always liked his girlfriend's art better. Well, I guess now they're married. It's funny because her art is almost the exact opposite of his stuff. She'd make these voodoo dolls of her friends. But they were almost the opposite of voodoo dolls because they were all about love. She'd cut these forms out of fabric and stuff them. They didn't exactly adhere to the shapes of people's actual bodies, but rather, how they felt to her. For instance, one guy was very tall, but in her set of dolls she'd make him extraordinarily tall, like a tree. Then she would take a polaroid of the person's face, and through a process of photographic emulsion transference, put their face on the doll. Then she would ask for a little bit of hair, and she would sew it into the doll. And every doll was different. Some had the hair sewn into a heart shape. And she would make clothes for them, depending on the person. And I knew a bunch of the people, and the stuff she did with them was always "right". Maybe not right physically, but it felt right emotionally what she did to them. And she never wanted to sell any of her work. She wanted to keep it all. I don't know if she feels the same way now. I don't even know if she still makes art.
posted by Sully at 1:05 PM on May 11, 2006

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