Can Choco Pies—the delectable marshmallowy snack cake—bring us closer together? The artist Mina Cheon hopes so, and in collaboration with the Asia Society Triennial, she has launched a new digital initiative dubbed Eat Chocopie Together, in which she implores the public to share the treat virtually with a friend “for global peace”, to help those affected by the coronavirus and to combat anti-Asian racism. Choco Pies, similar to Moon Pies or Wagon Wheels in US and UK, were reportedly banned in North Korea in 2014 as a dangerous symbols of capitalism, and Cheon has previously used the treat as a form of “politipop” activism.
“Eat Chocopie Together presents a humble but powerful call to action: to extend compassion and thoughtfulness through the act of sharing,” says Ken Tan, the executive director of global artistic programmes and the deputy director of the Asia Society Museum. For each pair of Choco Pies shared on the site, with wrappers designed by Cheon, a donation of $2 will be made in the names of the participants to the Korean American Community Foundation COVID-19 Action Fund, up to a total of $5,000.
“While the originally planned physical installation has been rescheduled to 2021, we are thrilled to be able to collaborate with the artist to now launch this virtual version,” Tan adds. “The digital initiative responds to a time when our lives have been forcefully distanced, by allowing anyone, from anywhere, to share and enjoy virtual Choco Pies with friends and loved ones.”