Survivalist's Sculpture Garden, 2010
The California desert in its relative solitude and inhospitableness attracts a form of dwelling construction that contrasts with the rectilinear geometry, standardized materials, and generally accepted design practices of architecture in urban centers.
In 2010, I visited the Noah Purifoy Foundation in Joshua Tree, the Integraton in Landers, Salvation Mountain and Slab City near Niland, and Carey’s Castle, an abandoned miner’s cabin wedged between boulders in a remote stretch of desert above Interstate 10 east of Indio. Collectively, these structures speak to a desire to formulate a self-sufficient alternative to the lifestyle determined by the large urban centers in which many of us choose to live (and around which the contemporary art scene typically revolves).
Later, I revisited some of the peculiarities inherent in these experimental structures in a small show of site-specific sculptures titled Survivalist’s Sculpture Garden, installed at the Lost Horse Ranger Station in Joshua Tree National Park.