“It’s my cemetery now. It’s my grave marker.”

Billy Tripp's Mindfield

On our way to Nashville for the Charlie Parr show, we made a quick stop in Brownsville for a New Deal building.  This structure caught my eye as we were leaving.  At first, I thought it to be some type of electrical/power facility.  In a way, you might still describe it as that–the mind is the ultimate power facility, and this is Billy Tripp’s Mindfield Cemetery.

The structure

Occupying a spot on Main Street, Tripp’s “vast bricolage” has been described as an outdoor cathedral, a cemetery (Tripp intends to be interred within the structure at his death), and something of an eyesore that irritated the locals (William L. Ellis, Folkart Society of America).  He began the structure in 1989 and has continued to add to it and plans to do so until his death.  He has been described as an artist, although he does not describe himself as one.  He just says he is a person who makes things, and he makes them for himself, but does not mind if others “overhear his conversation.”

…his belief in the inherent beauty of our world, and the importance of tolerance in our communities and government systems. (Roadside America)

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2 Responses to “It’s my cemetery now. It’s my grave marker.”

  1. A different private cemetery! I am not sure I would care to see it every day either. Looks like just an electrical/power facility which are not very attractive to me. Interesting though!

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    • Suzassippi says:

      It is actually quite intriguing looking. Because of the surrounding businesses, it is hard to get a good angle for photography. It is on his land (he has a business and shop behind). It is now quite a draw apparently, fascinating tourists who seek it out and visit as a result, so I guess they may have more tolerance now. Those folks spend their money there when they are in town to see it. It is mostly commercial in the area proximate to the structure. I have always been drawn to and fascinated by power facilities, particularly when lit at night. Probably why I love industrial look and would love to live in a warehouse. 🙂

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