Project image
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$14,277
pledged of $70,000pledged of $70,000 goal
236
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Sat, March 26 2016 4:10 PM UTC +00:00
Last updated March 26, 2016

Divine Monument

A unique public art project celebrating DIVINE, a most iconic performer, in one of Baltimore's most famous films -- Pink Flamingos.

Divine Monument

A unique public art project celebrating DIVINE, a most iconic performer, in one of Baltimore's most famous films -- Pink Flamingos.

$14,277
pledged of $70,000pledged of $70,000 goal
236
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Sat, March 26 2016 4:10 PM UTC +00:00
Last updated March 26, 2016

About

What do two teachers, a software engineer, an owner of a performance art venue, an Iranian-American writer, a filmmaker and two of Baltimore's leading sculptors have in common?

They love Baltimore City.

They love DIVINE.

They think it's time for this iconic figure to be honored in a unique way and forever memorialize Divine's role in Pink Flamingos.

DIVINE accomplished so much in his career. Why have you chosen to immortalize this particular moment?

Final Scene Pink Flamingos
Final Scene Pink Flamingos

This monument is referencing a particular performance of Divine's -- one that set off Harris Glenn Milstead's career, as well as John Waters.

We have chosen to reference this scene because of the direct impact it had on the cultural identity of Baltimore.

Moreover, that last scene in Pink Flamingos is iconic the world over. This monument solves the problem of how to find the location where DIVINE acted that scene.

What is the DIVINE Monument?

Divine Monument Concept
Divine Monument Concept

At first glance this monument might masquerade as a typical devotional space, but make no mistake with a second look, the piece will irreverently and outrageously scream in pitched Bawlemorese:

"Hey, damn it. I'm right here -- and I'm simply DIVINE!"

By embracing traditional architectural motifs and materials like marble, granite and bronze, the piece will clearly reference other devotional spaces built for contemplation and reflection.

However, rather than the typical serene reliquary space, a large scale portrait etched in black granite will be readable from across the street, and upon closer inspection the viewer will encounter a beautifully cast bronze dog feces perched on marble steps, aptly pay tribute to our Heroine’s role in the final scene from “Pink Flamingos.”

Where Is It Going to Be?

The location of the final scene in Pink Flamingos is close to downtown Baltimore.

It's conveniently located near the corner of Read and Tyson Streets (zip code 21202) where access will be FREE to all (take a selfie perhaps) and pay homage to DIVINE.

Tyson Street, Baltimore
Tyson Street, Baltimore

When Is It Going to be Ready?

Only if the money is raised, will production begin.

The artists need 5 months to complete the entirety of the monument.

Once complete---an unveiling ceremony will be planned (date to be determined).

Where is your dollar going to?

Our dedicated group and professional artists have spent a considerate amount of time measuring every aspect of this project from design, installation, and maintenance of this monument.

Details:

Total Project Budget- $70,000

  • All Materials and Fabrication - $46,000
  • Transportation - $2,000
  •  Installation - $8,000
  •  Insurance - $2,000
  • Project Management & Media Communication - $5,000
  • 10 year maintenance fee - $7,000 (City of Baltimore requires a 10-year-maintenance fee for any public art dedicated to it. Dollar amount per year $700)

Our hope is to exceed our goal and the excess funds will be applied to the production of a public unveiling party (think music, speakers, food, performances, costumes, etc).

How Did It All Begin?

For years, former teacher and Baltimore native, Michal Makarovich heard the enthusiasm from city residents as well as both national and global visitors asking him where John Water's 1972 cult film Pink Flamingos was shot.

Specifically, fans wanted to visit the exact location of the (in)famous final scene where Divine, “The Filthiest Person Alive,” eats doggie doo off a Baltimore sidewalk. 

"What a shame, no one has ever marked the spot properly," Makarovich kept wondering until one day he shared his long-time dream with friends (the other organizers of this project) and met their enthusiasm and full support. 

Soon, the group was able to secure the commitment of David Hess and Sebastian Martorana, two leading Baltimore artists, who graciously agreed to undertake the design, building and installation of the monument. 

Find out out more about the project on the official website here.

Who Are We?

ARTISTS 

David Hess is a sculptor who works primarily with found materials which he refers to as “rescued objects.” These rescued objects are repositories for the history and cultural narrative that inform his work. His sculptures can be found in numerous private and public collections including the collections of The American Visionary Art Museum, Baltimore Museum of Industry, Johns Hopkins Hospital, Sinai Hospital, and Thurgood Marshall Airport. Visit davidhess.net for more.

Service Road by David Hess, Stainless Steel and Steel. Dimensions 26'x10'x2'
Service Road by David Hess, Stainless Steel and Steel. Dimensions 26'x10'x2'

Sebastian Martorana is an artist living and working in Baltimore City. From a passion born while studying the artistic masterpieces of Florence, Italy, Sebastian Martorana approaches his stonework as interplay between the persons, environs, and material objects shaping our lives.  His studio is located in Hilgartner Natural Stone Company, America’s oldest operational stone company. His works have been featured at The Walters Art Museum, the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and on numerous buildings throughout Baltimore City, Washington DC, and the East Coast. Visit sebastianworks.com for more.

We Both Wear Pants by Sebastian Martorana, 2015, marble & found objects
We Both Wear Pants by Sebastian Martorana, 2015, marble & found objects

ORGANIZERS 

Some of the members of our team posing where the monument will be built. Click on the image to read  the Baltimore Brew coverage of our story.
Some of the members of our team posing where the monument will be built. Click on the image to read the Baltimore Brew coverage of our story.

Alex Fox is one of the co-owners of Church & Company, a Hampden multi-use venue.

Michal Makarovich is the owner of Hampden Junque, a life-long Baltimore resident, and the person who hatched this idea.

Michael Pugh is a teacher at the Baltimore Design School and owner of a rowhouse that is very close to the spot where the scene was filmed.

Parisa Saranj is an Iranian-American writer helping with fund-raising and has successfully crowdsourced a portion of a memoir she is currently writing about coming of age in the post-revolution Iran.

James Stevenson is a Baltimore-based software engineer who is building a web presence for the monument.

Steve Yeager is an independent filmmaker from Baltimore. He is best known for his film on the life of fellow director John Waters, Divine Trash, which won the Filmmaker's Trophy for Best Documentary at the Sundance Film Festival in 1998. Steve is also the co-author of the book My Son Divine with Glenn's mother, Francis Milstead.

"The Mayor thinks that the idea sounds divine," said Howard Libit, a spokesman for Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. ~ Baltimore Sun

ADDITIONAL FAQ

Does this project require approval from the city?

The monument is a gift of public art to the city, but it is located primarily (see risks & challenges below) on private property.  Provided the unlikely scenario that the city does not accept the gift, the monument shall remain privately owned.

How can I contact the organizers of this project?

If you have any questions or concerns regarding this project, please feel free to contact us at media@divinemonument.com.

Risks and challenges

Our group anticipates no major setbacks and challenges given months of research and extensive open dialog with city officials such as Baltimore Office of Promotion of the Arts. However, there is the risk of a slight change in the design due to the outcome of a Department Of Transportation a hearing regarding the right of way for the installation of steps onto a sidewalk. Please note that the only aspect at risk of change here is to the steps; the remainder of the design would NOT be affected.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1 or more About US$ 1

    Divine Karma!

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    Pledge US$ 5 or more About US$ 5

    ~ A "wink" from the Egg Man
    ~ Divine Karma!

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    Pledge US$ 10 or more About US$ 10

    ~ A Divine Postcard mailed to you
    ~ A "wink" from the Egg Man
    ~ Divine Karma!

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    11 backers
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    Pledge US$ 20 or more About US$ 20

    Your name will be featured on the Benefactors page on www.divinemonument.com, the official site of the project.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 35 or more About US$ 35

    ~ Your name in chalk on the sidewalk during the construction of the monument
    ~ Your name will be featured on the Benefactors page on www.divinemonument.com, the official site of the project.
    ~ A Divine Postcard mailed to you
    ~ A "wink" from the Egg Man
    ~ Divine Karma!

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    6 backers
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 50 or more About US$ 50

    A photo of the monument signed by artists David Hess and Sebastian Martorana, in addition lower denomination rewards.

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    Ships to Only certain countries
    Limited 48 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 75 or more About US$ 75

    ~ A Divine poster mailed to you
    ~ A photo of the monument signed by artists David Hess and Sebastian Martorana
    ~ Your name in chalk on the sidewalk during the construction of the monument
    ~ Your name will be featured on the Benefactors page on www.divinemonument.com, the official site of the project.
    ~ A Divine Postcard mailed to you
    ~ A "wink" from the Egg Man
    ~ Divine Karma!

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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 2 backers
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 100 or more About US$ 100

    A DVD of Divine Trash, the Sundance award winning documentary on the making of Pink Flamingos, signed by the director, Steve Yeager, in addition lower denomination rewards.

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    Ships to Only certain countries
    Limited 31 backers
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 250 or more About US$ 250

    ~ Special behind-the-scenes studio tour during the fabrication of the monument (date to be determined; if you are not local, we will update you by video)
    ~ A DVD of Divine Trash, the Sundance award winning documentary on the making of Pink Flamingos, signed by the director, Steve Yeager,
    ~ A Divine poster mailed to you
    ~ A photo of the monument signed by artists David Hess and Sebastian Martorana
    ~ Your name in chalk on the sidewalk during the construction
    ~ Your name will be featured on the Benefactors page on www.divinemonument.com, the official site of the project.
    ~ A Divine Postcard mailed to you
    ~ A "wink" from the Egg Man
    ~ Divine Karma!

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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 2 backers
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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 500 or more About US$ 500

    ~ A custom Divine thank-you card signed by the artists, David Hess and Sebastian Martorana, and all committee members
    ~ Special behind-the-scenes studio tour during the fabrication of the monument (date to be determined; if you are not local, we will update you by video)
    ~ A DVD of Divine Trash, the Sundance award winning documentary on the making of Pink Flamingos, signed by the director, Steve Yeager,
    ~ A Divine poster mailed to you
    ~ A photo of the monument signed by artists David Hess and Sebastian Martorana
    ~ Your name in chalk on the sidewalk during the construction
    ~ Your name will be featured on the Benefactors page on www.divinemonument.com, the official site of the project.
    ~ A Divine Postcard mailed to you
    ~ A "wink" from the Egg Man
    ~ Divine Karma!

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    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only certain countries
    Limited 1 backer
    $

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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 750 or more About US$ 750

    ~ A private Pink Flamingos tour, given by filmmaker Steve Yeager (date to be determined)
    ~ A custom Divine thank-you card signed by the artists, David Hess and Sebastian Martorana, and all committee members
    ~ Special behind-the-scenes studio tour during the fabrication of the monument (date to be determined; if you are not local, we will update you by video)
    ~ A DVD of Divine Trash, the Sundance award winning documentary on the making of Pink Flamingos, signed by the director, Steve Yeager,
    ~ A Divine poster mailed to you
    ~ A photo of the monument signed by artists David Hess and Sebastian Martorana
    ~ Your name in chalk on the sidewalk during the construction
    ~ Your name will be featured on the Benefactors page on www.divinemonument.com, the official site of the project.
    ~ A Divine Postcard mailed to you
    ~ A "wink" from the Egg Man
    ~ Divine Karma!

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    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only certain countries
    Limited 0 backers
    $

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  12. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1,000 or more About US$ 1,000

    ~ A small marble chunk (leftover from the salvaged marble stair treads used to create the monument) commemorating the location and monument
    ~ A private Pink Flamingos tour, given by filmmaker Steve Yeager (date to be determined)
    ~ A custom Divine thank-you card signed by the artists, David Hess and Sebastian Martorana, and all committee members
    ~ Special behind-the-scenes studio tour during the fabrication of the monument (date to be determined; if you are not local, we will work out a video/skype replacement option)
    ~ A DVD of Divine Trash, the Sundance award winning documentary on the making of Pink Flamingos, signed by the director, Steve Yeager,
    ~ A Divine poster mailed to you
    ~ A photo of the monument signed by artists David Hess and Sebastian Martorana
    ~ Your name in chalk on the sidewalk during the construction
    ~ Your name will be featured on the Benefactors page on www.divinemonument.com, the official site of the project.
    ~ A Divine Postcard mailed to you
    ~ A "wink" from the Egg Man
    ~ Divine Karma!

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    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    Limited 0 backers
    $

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  13. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 5,000 or more About US$ 5,000

    Your name will be engraved on the monument with other major benefactors, in addition lower denomination rewards.

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Funding period

- (60 days)