Photo by Maureen Garrett

Photo by Maureen Garrett

(correct caption)

"Sculpture by Maureen Hoffman Garrett. 
The alien was created from
discarded materials and greeted Ravers
at the entrance to the
Gateway Sound System in 1996."

QUESTION:  “At what point does discarded / recycled materials exceed the sum of their parts and transcend into something else, a new work of art?”  

Over the years, Mariposa has made three trips back to Burning Man, and was often invited to raves (parties) throughout the 90's. She was a part of the altar room during Verbum's Be-In, January 9, 1997.

Materials:  "Mariposa" the alien, was made out of recycled materials, including an old-fashioned broken mannequin, without hands or head, with removable arms and one leg, and a short neck who was given to me by a dear friend Helene, now residing in Colorado. Her head was made from a gifted, yet torn and old hollow and decaying rubber mask from the film Close Encounters of the Third Kind, which I altered significantly, using plaster of Paris, spackle, and insulating foam.  The goal was to create a unique and beautiful female alien face and to make it unrecognizable from the original mask. Her hands were fashioned from an old pair of rubber gloves.  Various paints were used, including exterior house, primer, and airbrushed fluorescents.  Other materials included bolts, bottle caps, epoxy and tons of sand paper.

Ms Alien "Mariposa" was 'visioned' at Burning Man in 1995 and created for Burning Man in 1996 where she greeted Ravers as they entered Gateway's Sound System. She stands over 7' tall and glows under sunlight and black light.

Three full pages are devoted to Mariposa in the first Burning Man book, published in 1997, photographed by Barb Traub. A headshot of the sculpture filmed in daylight, appeared as part of a collage in the November 1996 issue of Wired Magazine.  Also, photos of Mariposa are in Barb's new book "Desert to Dream:  A Decade of Burning Man Photography". 

Unfortunately, the caption on page 45 of Barb's new book is 100% incorrect.  She wasn't a pre-existing sculpture from the movie ET that I "decorated".  She is a beautiful work of art that I created out of discarded materials.  At least my name was spelled correctly. [[grin]]

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