BY ArtCoWo Press ©  10 - 15 - 15

N oah Purifoy was a "Junk Dada Genius". His work, which evolved over a lengthy course of time in fantastic Joshua Tree, formed from recycled parts strewn throughout the exotic Californian desert. To experience the museum first hand is a compelling and evocatively moving experience. Recent honors at LACMA, Noah Purifoy has begun to be more recognized world wide for his contribution to art history.

I spoke with Pat Brunty, who informed me she worked for Noah for four years before his untimely death in 2004. She helped him create some of the sculptures in the Museum and she still manages the grounds. She lives right next to the museum and kindly told me to park underneath the trees for my car to stay cool in the sweltering desert heat.

From giant crosses to space shuttle rockets, the museum covers every gambit of socio-political afterthoughts, creating not just a sight for sore eyes but for sore minds. From statements about religiosity to the afterlife, there is even a mini-graveyard that serves as holy grounds on the giant installation park. Noah Purifoy's museum reaches beyond the normal definition of a museum.

Part of it being outside and partly because of the fact these works, at the time they were built, were not considered art. Now they are being placed in world class museums as objects of fascination and study for a person that may be the most influential artist of this century. The wealth of objects for study is overwhelming. There were just too many sculptures to take pictures of. These phenomenal works set against the beauty of Joshua Tree creates a stunning and ethereal experience. I was transported to another world. To grasp every concept and idea was a challenging experience. At one point I ventured inside one of the conceptual pieces, to notice the immense detail Purifoy produced to every effect.

There were even pants hanging to dry, like someone was in the middle of a laundry day and we get to peak in, to see their life unfolding. This shelter in the beautiful desert could be someone's home.

Was is Noah's? Well, he had several shelter-like structures that could have served as dwellings while he created his Art-pieces. I really don't even think the work "Junk Dada" is the correct term given to his wondrous creations.

It is more in lines with being a complex assemblage to the nth degree. It is not entirely Dada because these works are intricately detailed. Not at all just ready-mades as they were conceived as ideas of mass political, religious, personal and social meaning. A sign "Keep Out", was placed on Noah's castle to serve as the destructive powers of capitalism and the lack of sharing that exists in a world obsessed with money. If you cross the moat you will be served with a polite message.

I think the best description of this type of work is, "Conceptual Dada". Though the art is formed from thrown away objects, recycled materials, found items, garbage. What is formed from these materials are far from being junk. Purifoy created lasting impressions of psychological and urban sociology building on the framework of scattered remnants from the desert and beyond.

I would like to see in the future at the museum, a permanent indoor museum to house some of the sculptures because I believe that time will take its toll on some of the more fragile works. The California Arts Council needs to fund the museum to have a permanent staff because Pat cannot run the whole complex.

It needs to function like a normal museum with endowments and donations. This may be the most important California Museum and it needs the care and respect world wide.

ART COLLECTOR WORLD                     All Rights Reserved 2015 © Contact: