John Lloyd Young, who won a 2006 Best Actor Tony Award for playing Frankie Valli in Jersey Boys, can add a new title to his resume: artist. According to The Los Angeles Times, Young debuted his mixed-media creations—most of them featuring rhinestone-covered packaged food—at a benefit show held at the home of Allee Wills, the Tony-nominated composer of The Color Purple.
Appropriately enough, Young’s "Food for Thought" exhibition debuted at a May 23 fundraiser for AIDS Project Los Angeles’ Necessities of Life program, America's largest network of free-food pantries for low-income people living with HIV/AIDS. Wills, a self-proclaimed lover of kitsch, got involved after Young presented her with an unusual gift: a rhinestone-covered box of Triscuits.
“Every time I went to the grocery store, I saw potential,” the 34-year-old Brown University graduate told the Times. “It turned into an art show.”
Among the unique artworks on display was a wall of sparkly Good & Plenty boxes, a domino set created from Kraft macaroni and cheese cartons, “Wham, Bam, Thank You, Spam” (a bling-covered Spam can) and “Explosion,” which features a Young-lookalike doll holding a tiny Tony Award surrounded by Tony’s pizza boxes.
“It keeps me sane as an actor to have something to work on in between shows and auditions,” Young explained to the Times. “Most of [the food] is iconic. The packages never changed. I loved finding ways to play with them. I essentially got to play with my food.”