When we were deep into the lockdown with no end in sight, one of the few things that kept me amused was the Getty Museum Challenge.
Launched as a social media call-to-action, the #GettyMuseumChallenge asked participants from around the world to recreate their favorite artworks using only the objects in their homes. The response was overwhelming.
“The #GettyMuseumChallenge morphed into a worldwide digital exhibition, with re-creations popping up across Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Reddit, blogs, news media, and lots of other e-places besides,” the museum said in an announcement on its blog. “By May there were already at least 100,000 re-creations, though it quickly became impossible to count.”
Realizing they had a feel-good and marketable phenomenon on their hands, the staff at the Getty Museum got to work weeding out the thousands of creative attempts. The result is Off the Walls, a 144-page book of the most hilarious and heartfelt shelter-in-place shots juxtaposed with the masterpieces that inspired them.
Here’s a preview:
A lot of people taking the challenge chose to recreate works by Johannes Vermeer (including me, with an admittedly sloppy attempt). Curiously, one of the most striking images that made it into the book is Jenny Boot’s striking modernization of “Girl With a Pearl Earring.” Boot actually photographed her homage to Vermeer back in 2016.