Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Toute de Frooties
Reason #256 why I love Fond du Lac: You can actually still buy penny candy here.
It's true! There is a wonderful little corner grocery store about a mile from my house called Philly's on 4th (the owner's name is Phil). This store is part of the Moses dynasty - some of you may know that Fond du Lac is home to some of the biggest lottery winners in U.S. History and we have a reputation for being VERY lucky. Well, the son of the folks who sold those tickets now has his own store. It's one of those places where you will surely be greeted with a "Hey, how's it goin'?" and the best customer service in town (they also sell their famous broasted chicken, which is to DIE FOR).
Last Tuesday, after running some errands, I stopped in for a treat. I didn't know what I wanted - just something small, like an Ice Cube. But then I saw these Frooties, all separated by color, in different baskets, and the price - just one cent apiece - well, how could I resist? So I brought a handful up to the counter - 24 cents with tax. AWESOME! I was instantly transported back to the summer of '80, when I'd go to Hansen's in Green Bay and buy Wacky Packages with my allowance. Seriously - when's the last time you got more than one of something for less than a quarter?!?!
After I had eaten the candies, I studied the wrappers. Such fun colors! I decided I wasn't going to throw them out right away, but I didn't have a clear idea how I'd use them yet, either.
And then, SHAZAM!!! It all came into place. I'd cut them into strips with my handy-dandy shrezzors (one of my FAVE art tools, by the way!). One problem - I'd have to eat WAY more of these little guys, and I really didn't want to have to eat hundreds more. Solution: have other people eat them for me! :D
Fond du Lac Visual Arts (and I also repped Fond du Lac Artists' Association). I wanted to create something while we sat there from 10-3 to spark interest for the passersby, so I brought a blank mirror and 176 candies (totaling a whopping $1.76 before tax!). As you can see in the photo here, taken by library community liaison Terry Fleming, we needed a lot of people to eat those candies! Never fear - there were a lot of kids at the library on Saturday (it snowed that day, so the library was pretty full).
So while people walked past, they'd take a candy and leave the wrapper in the other bowl. By the end of the day there were only about 40 candies left and I had my materials for the mirror you see here, which I just finished last night:
By my count, I "shredded" 350 little pieces of wrapper. It was far more time-consuming that I had thought it would be, but I really like how it turned out - almost "Dia de los Muertos"-looking.
It just goes to show that you can make art from ANYTHING. Oh, and this mirror will be donated to the wonderful folks at Art Attack in Chilton for their gala fundraiser in May. I hope they make some money from it! :D