Tacky Treasures Road Show 2016
The Tacky Treasures Road Show is modeled after the PBS program "Antiques Roadshow," except that in this case the question the appraiser always asks is, "Do you have any idea how tacky this is?" I love the sound of that, so I do it every year.
This year's road show took place on March 19, 2016 at the Silver Spring B&O Train Station. No longer used as a railroad station, it has been restored (by Montgomery Preservation, Inc.) to look as it did in 1945, complete with ticket booth, lockers, phone booth, and a waiting room with comfy benches.
There were 28 fabulously tacky entries and about 50 attendees. This may have been our biggest road show yet, and still there were many people I missed seeing there. Maybe next year.
A big thanks goes to this year's judges, who were: Denis Malloy and Carolee Rand. While they made their deliberations, I displayed the five prizes. I was so glad that I was able to get rid of -- I mean find some things in my collection worthy of serving as prizes in the road show.
This show would be nothing if not for the enthusiastic participants who enter the competition. There was stiff competition for the five prizes, and as far as I'm concerned, anyone who didn't win can rightfully say, "I came in sixth." I also want to thank, and give due credit, to everyone who sent me photographs for this report.
Finally, I would also like to thank all those who contributed to the donation basket. I recovered more than half of what I spent to rent the station, which is a big help. Again, THANK YOU!
Key to the photographers' codes on the photos: BF = Betsy Fulford; BS = Bev Stanton; EE = Ed Engel; IG = Ira Gitlin; JM = Julie Mangin; KW = Kathy Woodrell; LR = Liz Roll; RE = Rita Elsner
First Place: Sad-Eyed Boy with Elephant and Naked Woman painting
It's not just bad art; it's inscrutable bad art. The bluish complexion is strange enough, but what to make of the naked woman waving a leafy branch with a small elephant behind her? That's what made it such a great entry in the road show. Clearly this is a candidate for the Museum of Bad Art (http://www.museumofbadart.org/).
Of course, this reminded me of another piece of bad art, one which took top honors at the 2011 Tacky Treasures Road Show, the Naked Ladies Dulcimer Society. Of course, this is one piece of art that none of use will forget, most of all Jeff Chumley, in whose family room it still resides. Check it out: http://tackytreasures.com/topics/ttrs2011.html#nakedlady
Second Place: Religious Shell Sculpture from Skyline Drive
You can't go wrong in a contest all about kitsch if you enter something that is religious, like this crucifix, and decorated by shells. Bonus points if it's a lamp! Add plastic flamingos and palm trees, and you have a winner!
I've often said that I am not making fun of Jesus when I call something like this tacky. I'm making fun of how people represent someone whom they say they have great devotion for. C'mon, the way this thing is decorated, it looks like a party, not an execution. Kind of gives the wrong impression, if you ask me.
Third Place: Juice Glass with Engrish Poem
It looks like this one slipped past the language quality assurance team at the factory, which perhaps is somewhere in Asia. Their mistake is the Tacky Treasures Road Show's gain!
I recited this poem twice at the road show, and a second reading did not make it any less inscrutable.
Fourth Place: Peek-A-Boo Necktie
Ira says, about his entry, "Note the semiotics/iconography: Beer, cards, golf--he's in the dog house! When I saw this on the rack at the Village Thrift Store in Bladensburg, MD, I didn't see the cheesecake photo right away, but I instantly understood the message being conveyed, namely, this is a tie for a man chafing under the constraints of married life. So I says to myself, "I bet there's a girlie picture in the lining." And sure enough...."
I couldn't have said it better myself.
Fifth Place: Political Tacky Collection
From the Hillary bottle opener to the Trump breath mints, there's something for everyone in this collection of tacky political mementos.
There's a refrigerator magnet with Hillary Clinton as Rosie the Riveter, saying "We can do it!" If you have the Ted Cruz "TrusTED" magnet next to it on your refrigerator, chances are there's great unrest around your house.
Maybe you want Bill Clinton for First Gentlemen, but just in case, you should be ready for Crazy Bernie. Don't forget, "We Shall Overcomb." I find this whole presidential campaign season confusing, if not outright scary. This collection of memorabilia pulls it all together. (Shudder.)
The most compelling object in this collection was the Trump toilet paper. Here's what it looked like hanging in the train station ladies room.
The winners, in order of their rank in the contest, were invited to select from the array of prizes.
There were many other great entries, not all of which I could include here. These were among the best for which I received photos.
Also entered were:
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