Hieronymus Bosch Piñatas.

You do not want to miss the work of Roberto Benavidez, not one single bit of it! This artist is well worth a healthy little detour in your day. All of his work is stunning, imaginative, and very beautiful. There’s a distinct sense of humour suffused throughout, a noticing of the irony in small details. Hyperallergic has an excellent article, lots of images, and Benavidez’s website is full of delights.

Hieronymus Bosch piñata by Roberto Benavidez.

…How appropriate, then, that Los Angeles-based artist Roberto Benavidez has made wild, larger-than-life representations from the Hieronymus Bosch painting, “The Garden of Earthly Delights,” in piñata form.

“Sin is inherent in both the Bosch painting and the piñata, so to me it was a perfect pairing,” said Benavidez, in an email interview with Hyperallergic. “I like that my work is a blend of both Mexican and European art forms, which in a way represents who I am. Plus, I have always admired and gravitated towards old painting techniques. The oddness of the creatures and people, the odd perspective — they were captivating. As a sculptor, the challenge of taking these odd 2D forms and recreating [them] into 3D is the most fulfilling challenge for me right now.”

Benavidez has an interdisciplinary practice that includes sculpture, photography, and print work, but has experimented extensively with piñatas as a medium, including a collection of “Sugar Skull Piñatas” and a set of “Painting Piñatas,” in which he renders landscapes out of his own handcrafted version of the cheap paper fringe found on piñatas.


One of Roberto Benavidez’s “Painting Pinatas”.

“The painting piñatas are predominately vessels as well,” said Benavidez. “These were inspired by the layering of the crêpe paper when fringing the 3-D forms and realizing how similar it was to blending and layering colors with paint, although a bit more limiting … I love the absurdity of taking the cheapest and most unimaginative form of the piñata and putting hours of such meticulous fringe work into it.”

Have a bit of a wander this day, and delight in the work of Roberto Benavidez. The full article is at Hyperallergic.


  1. busterggi says

    How could anyone hit that adorable thing with a stick -- I can always get candy elsewhere.

  2. chigau (違う) says

    One of the local Latino grocery stores sells piñatas that look a lot like Trump.

  3. blf says

    The mildly deranged penguin says its a lot more fun to use the real critters Hieronymus Bosch painted in your piñatas — you don’t think he made them up, did you? — as you get to duck and whack on snarling demons and the like, and unless yer careful, boiled in a flaming pot of ah, well, not quite cheese, shall we say. Rather far from cheese, in fact. Closer to peas.

    The biggest problem, she says, is stuffing the candy inside; most of ’em don’t have a sweet tooth (despite having lots of teeth), so the usual trick is to take a xian, stuff her/him full of candy, and then feed the candy-centred xian to the demon. Rather more fun than the usual lions, she suggests. This feeding critters with candy-filled xians is, in fact, roughly what parts of The Garden of Earthly Delights depicts, and also gives a hint as to part of the reason for its name.

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