Junk Art

Junk Art galore awaits you at East Jesus; an art installation, near Niland, California.  (Actually, it's a bunch of junk, made into other junk.) This is a short drive, down the road from Slab City.


First, you will pass Salvation Mountain, the place that makes me want to change the "Jesus loves me" song lyrics to... "Jesus loves me, this I know, for the mountain tells me so."

Keep going and you will drive past Slab City, which is quite the eye opener and a bit scary. It's the home of artists and some non-conventional, squatters. There are a bunch of Rv's parked; here, there and yonder and also the occasional tent. Some places have garbage, piled everywhere....or maybe that's art, too? Someday, maybe the garbage, will be piled high enough to make another mountain?

Since our visit to East Jesus, I have decided, I shouldn't be calling my creations "craft projects".


It seems, if you call something "art" you can get away with all sorts of nonsense. Oops.. did I say nonsense? I mean, recognition for your amazing masterpieces. Who wouldn't be impressed by a bunch of old shoes, strategically placed, to make a peace sign? 

When we arrived at East Jesus, we were a little reluctant to get out of our vehicle. Were common folk like us, even allowed here? We were greeted by an amusing, old guy, with long white hair and beard. We gave a donation and he said, maybe we should wait, because we may be buying a pig in a poke. There was no pig in a poke, that I saw, but there were a lot of really weird pieces of... uhmmmmm... JUNK, I mean ART! JUNK ART!

We were told to go ahead and touch whatever we wanted. No one really wants to touch anything, when they are allowed to. If you don't have your tetanus shot, up to date, you REALLY don't want to be touching anything.

More Junk Art

The junk art time machine, looked interesting, but we didn't touch it. The last rider got a little crazy on it, so it wasn't functioning, at full capacity. Maybe the flux capacitor was damaged?

There seems to be a challenge, which I declined to participate in. We heard the story of how this challenge originated. These guys were told they would get a free t-shirt, if they could video the rider, spinning around, until he threw up. The throwing up from spinning in a circle, would be the easy part; Getting it on video, more difficult. I didn't do it,  because I'm not a big fan of making myself sick, just for a T shirt. The time machine, also looked like it might fly apart at any second, without trying to wildly, spin it around, while sitting in it. The other concern was ending up in the middle of next week, or even the year 2035! (Afterall, it IS a time machine!) Who needs that?


There was a giant teeter totter, but without a third person to hold the one end, it was impossible for the second person to get on. Didn't touch that either. We didn't actually touch anything, partially out of respect, but mostly fear.  


The sign, proclaiming "Terrible psychiatric counciling Inside .25 cents", was pretty funny. What a great deal! At least you know what you're getting and you won't be disappointed!

The "No Trespassing" sign is confusing, though! Can I come in for my counciling or can't I?


Who doesn't like junk art from bottles? There was a bottle wall, which was nice, but a house would have been really impressive. (They do exist, just not here.)

Too bad the broken glass lying around, wasn't rescued and used, before it was smashed.


The stacked T.V's, with various messages on them, were mildly amusing, although, I'm not sure that was the purpose. These were probably, meant to be important messages, not a source of amusement. Art, that is amusing, is much better than some soapbox, extremist message. Shouldn't art, be enjoyed and make you feel happy, not miserable? Yes, I know, some believe art should provoke feelings, like shock, but that's just too serious for my liking. 


I think this highly decorated V.W. van is probably unoccupied now, or not. I didn't look in the window, for fear of what I might find; look if you dare. Some vehicles have mannequin heads and old shoes.



Some junk art, like the giant tire elephant, took some serious talent to create. It wasn't like the whole place was a junk hole. It did take some time to scan through the absurd and down right ridiculous, to see the good stuff. This, of course is all left up to your own interpretation and opinion. Okay, so it's actually all good stuff, but some is just for a laugh. Well, that's what I think, anyways.

I'm not trying to be insulting to anyone and I'm not a professional art critic. I'd rather see the fun side of art, instead of doom and gloom. The worst thing to do would be to walk away, taking this all too seriously. It may be a bit disturbing and just cause nightmares!


The artists that created the junk art masterpieces at East Jesus, had almost endless art supplies available, from the garbage dump. It just happens to be down the road a little ways. It is quite evident, that is where most of the stuff came from.

They also had almost an endless amount of time. Two thousand artists took ten years to do this? Wow, they really strained themselves! The old greeter of the place, suggested the artists may have had too many other distractions.

How would you like to live here? Maybe an earthquake toppled this adorable little house over. Mother Nature can produce some interesting art as well. Who needs artists?


East Jesus was an interesting place to see, but I wouldn't want to live there! I'm glad we escaped!

  1. Make Craft Projects
  2. Recycled Crafts
  3. Junk Art

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