Call it a slow news day if you must, but this little gem is in contention for Press Release of the Week: Ripley’s Believe It or Not! has acquired a portrait of Lady Gaga made out of 61,509 Airsoft BBs, the plastic balls used in a popular type of BB gun. “The artwork was created by Gainesville, Florida artist John O’Hearn, who is primarily a sculptor, but has spent the last few years experimenting with Airsoft BB’s as a medium,” the release explains. “The BB’s act as pixels in the mosaics he creates. O’Hearn says he can recreate any picture or portrait from just 5 colors of BB’s — red, yellow, blue, black and white. This project took about a month to finish.”
“This is a spectacular work of art,” said Edward Meyer, VP of Exhibits and Archives for Ripley’s Believe It or Not!, of the 4′-by-8′ mosaic. “O’Hearn uses computer technology and an unusual medium to put a modern-day spin on pointillism.”
Gaga will go on display in Ripley’s Hollywood Odditorium in Spring 2011. Other celebrity portraits that hang in Odditoriums worldwide include: President Obama, Michael Jackson, and Dean Cain all made from gumballs; Eminem and Elvis made from M&M’s; Princess Diana made from dryer lint; Beyoncé, Marilyn Monroe, and Mo’Nique made from licorice and gummy bears; Taylor Swift made from pink and white Good N’ Plenty candies; and the Beatles made from chicken wire. Another John O’Hearn creation hangs in Ripley’s St. Augustine, Fla. Odditorium — a portrait of quarterback Tim Tebow made from 46,000 BBs.
Thoughts? I believe Gaga will enjoy her association with an “Odditorium.” I love that Dean Cain is mentioned in the same breath as President Obama and Michael Jackson. And were I a BB artist, I would create a portrait of Miranda Lambert and Blake Shelton for their wedding present. (Seriously, one of their friends should commission one.)