10 Wickedly Cool Sculptures

For today's compilation post, I decided to put together some of my favorite sculptures. These ten have been chosen because they each possess a slightly dark feeling. I call them wickedly cool and though some lean more towards cool than wicked, they're all meant to give you a lasting memory and even, perhaps, a few goosebumps.

Crack The Whip by J. Seward Johnson

Location: Sunset Hills Cemetery (Photo: Blooms n' Twigs)

A sweet cemetery sculpture gets a bit creepy when an anonymous person places birthday party hats on their heads and brightly colored beads around their necks. This grouping of sculptures, by J. Seward Johnson, bring back memories of childhood days, and is one of the many focal points in the cemetery.


The Awakening by J. Seward Johnson

Current Location: National Harbor in Prince George's County, Maryland, just outside the District of Columbia.

J. Seward Johnson also created The Awakening, a 100-foot statue of a giant embedded in the earth, struggling to free himself. The statue consists of five separate aluminum pieces buried in the ground, giving the impression of a panicked giant trying to pull himself to the surface.



American Merchant Mariners' Memorial by Marisol

Location: West side of Battery Park, New York

The memorial, designed by artist Marisol, was based on a true event during World War II, in which a Nazi U-boat attacked an American merchant marine vessel. While the marines held on to their sinking vessel, the Nazis photographed the victims, then left. The memorial is directly inspired by one of those photographs.


What You See Might Not Be Real by Chen Wenling

Location: Beijing gallery

Chen Wenling's sculpture shows a bull, meant to represent Wall Street, seen ramming the biggest con man of all time, Bernie Madoff, into a wall. The huge cloud coming out of the bull's rear not only refers to the end of a greedy era, but also symbolizes the danger of virtual bubbles in international financial markets.


Hot with the Chance of a Late Storm by The Glue Society

Location: Tamarama Beach, Australia

Many a child cried when this sculpture appeared at Tamarama beach. But the simple twist of making an entire ice-cream van melt all over the sand provided many more with the most potent climate change message imaginable. The work (created by The Glue Society) was even featured at the Paris Climate summit.


Emergence by Sayaka Kajita Ganz

Location: Roaming Exhibitions

Sayaka Kajita Ganz created these wild horse sculptures from trash-picked objects like plastic utensils, toys, and metals. She says, “By building these sculptures I try to understand the human relationships that surround me. It is a way for me to contemplate and remind myself that even if there is conflict right now, there is a way for all the pieces to fit together.”


Horizons by Neil Dawson

Location: New Zealand on “The Farm,” a large private art park owned by Alan Gibbs

Though the jury's still out as to whether this sculpture by Neil Dawson is in fact an optical illusion sculpture or a hoax, we're going with the former. The sculpture almost makes us feel as if we're living in a cartoon world.


Maman by Louise Bourgeois

Location: Guggenheim Museum Bilbao

Like a creature escaping from a nightmare, or a larger-than-life embodiment of a secret childhood fear, the giant spider Maman casts a powerful physical and psychological shadow. Over 30 feet high, the mammoth sculpture is one of the most ambitious undertakings in the long career of Louse Bourgeois.


Device to Root out Evil by Dennis Oppenheim

Location: Harbour Green Park, Coal Harbour, Vancouver (Photo: darian_marcus)

Dennis Oppenheim created this upside-down church made of galvanized structural steel, anodized perforated aluminum, transparent red Venetian glass, and concrete. Balancing on its steeple, the church is meant to look like it has been lifted by a terrific force and brought to the site as a method of rooting out evil forces.


Self by Marc Quinn

Location: Some twisted person's fridge

Marc Quinn's Self is a reproduction of the British artist's head composed of nine pints of his own frozen blood. It's Quinn's signature piece in the art world and it took him over a period of 5 months to complete. Can you say bloody brilliant?

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