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Farewell Man of Flamingo

IMG_0762Don Featherstone, fabricator of the kitschy pink flamingo, died on Monday, June 22, 2015 at the age of 79.  Mr. Featherstone was an artist by training, but who knew that the enduring medium of plastic and his eye for verisimilitude would cement him as the father of an icon in suburban garden whimsy. He partnered with Tom Herzing on a coffee table tome of “real”  folks exploring the creative limits of dressing and posing their pink flamingos:  The Original Pink Flamingos: Splendor on the Grass is still available.  I would imagine the folks at Schiffer Books are bracing for a run.    Link below if you want to check it out. http://www.schifferbooks.com/the-original-pink-flamingos-splendor-on-the-grass-962.html Who doesn’t have an opinion about the wire-legged lawn ornament?  Whether you love or loath the bird you can’t deny its longevity or its place in  American mid-century folk culture.  John Waters made a transgressive cult movie featuring them, named after them, too.  And when John Waters features your work in his, I’d say you have crossed the rubicon from American mass-culture into high-art. Fare thee well Don Featherstone.  Long live the pink flamingo!

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3 thoughts on “Farewell Man of Flamingo

  1. ha! Wonderful, I had no idea about any of this! Always a pleasure to learn from you, Dear Friend! Thank you for the nice tribute and for teaching me something today.

    1. Thank you, Eric. I did see his obit in the NYTimes (which always fascinates me how they decide who should get one), but he set a standard for lawn decor that has (and will continue to) inspire debate.
      Plus, it’s just a fun fact that now you can brag that you know the name of the dude who created them.

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