Upon my most recent visit to Art-O-Matic I found myself enchanted by a single exhibit… the Washington Post Peep Show. The 2nd annual contest happened back in March, but the exhibit is currently on display at Art-O-Matic . It is a spectacular celebration of wit, creativity, and craft. Not only was each little box a jubilant little experience, but the entire concept a fantastic exhibit. The fact that creativity sprang from all of these ordinary Post readers to create miniature snapshots in time using marshmallows… that was what really got me. No these weren’t kindergarten-grade dioramas, these were magnificent little masterpieces.
Here’s the background info:
The Washington Post’s Sunday Source Section held a competition, the rules were simple and included
1) Think of a scene, historic, current of in the future
2) Buy enough peeps to play the characters in the diorama
3) Make your diorama using a shoebox or a comparable box.
This was the second year that The Post held such a competition and they received over 800 entries. My favorites included “Peep Art” with a miniature marshmallow Andy Warhol- complete with ratty white wig, “Amy Winepeep” reciting “they tried to make me go to rehab and I said peep peep peep”, and “Peeps Atop a Skyscraper (c. 1932)” which mimicked a famous black and white photograph. Walking around the exhibit, every turn was a delightful surprise… I began by shrieking “Look, Elvis Peeplsey!“, then turned to discover one after another fantastic diorama.
After doing some online investigating I found that the Peeps Diorama Contest is not unique to Washington DC, and it’s actually sponsored by Peeps, the candy company. The online execution of this marketing campaign has a lot of room for improvement…I had a hard time Googling any clear details on Peeps involvement in the contest and did a lot of poking around before I could find it on their official brand site (usability nightmare). However the sheer number of entries is proof that great concepts can carry a campaign and engage based on the fact they are inviting and original.