Jello creations are evocative of 1950s America, a period full of post-war excess where Americans were filled with unrealistic optimism and entitlement. These jello landscapes illustrate the misplaced confidence particularly of white middle class Americans who felt entitled to put such strange juxtapositions of food, color, and texture together. The landscape is dystopian and viscerally unsettling, speaking to the exclusive and exorbitant undertones of this period.
Regardless of the eerie and superficial aspects of 1950s America, many think of it as a golden age. This opinion is imbued with racism and exclusivity, and is held largely by those who falsely perceive their privilege as threatened by women, people of color, and immigrants. Trump’s “Make America Great Again” campaign feeds off of these sentiments and gives momentum to hateful rhetoric and exclusivity. This collection and its imagined application critique this movement by illustrating a dystopian and unsettling environment.