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Molasses Swamp II

1999 Will Cotton Born: Melrose, Massachusetts 1965 oil on linen 36 x 48 in. (91.4 x 121.9 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of the James F. Dicke Family © 1999, Will Cotton 2013.72.2 Not currently on view

Gallery Label

Molasses Swamp II is an imagined landscape of enticing confections. Caramel "cottontails" protrude from a bubbling swamp, while Oreos, Mallomars, and peanut butter cups form a rocky perimeter. Will Cotton's candy-themed paintings, which were initially inspired by the board game Candy Land, originate as elaborate tabletop models that he constructs out of familiar brands of candy and his own homemade pastries. His fanciful worlds conjure childhood fantasies, but they are as much about adult desire, indulgence, and excess as they are innocent pleasure.


Object - foodstuff - candy


paint - oil

fabric - linen

About Will Cotton

Born: Melrose, Massachusetts 1965