Kenny Be's Yard Arteology: Of pigs and plastic pink flamingos

The study of neighbors through their lawn ornaments...

Figure 18. Regis: A logical balance of birds and boars

Perhaps the second-most vexing question facing the Denver homeowner is, "What yard-art animals should I get to flank my front door?" The most popular option is the lounging lion pair, followed by the basket-bearing retrievers, the preening swans and the welcome rabbits. In each of these animals, there is some simple symbol of peace, protection or prosperity. Encircling the entryway of the home pictured in figure 18 are three flamingos and a pig, which clearly shows a homeowner who is trying to harness animal energies to bring balance and logic to her home.

The use of symmetrically placed plastic topiary initially suggests a complete lack of spontaneity and imagination. However, the addition of the sheet metal pig and flamingos take what would merely be a mirror-image display of exactly similar parts and turns it into a synthesis of opposites. The pig is the international symbol of greed and ignorance. The flamingo is the symbol of the soul migrating from darkness to light. The trio of birds balancing the boar within the vegetal symmetry indicates that this yard artist is seeking intuitive spirits to her doorstep to answer the most vexing of all homeowner questions -- which is, "How can my property assessment have increased 27 percent in a time when home values have fallen 15 percent?"

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Kenny Be
Contact: Kenny Be

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