The Road Less Traveled




Artist Dates



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Date of Work

ca. 1976


35mm slide, digitized 2020


James Smith Pierce Collection: Folk and Outsider Image Collection




UND Art Collections Repository

Artist Bio

Born in Brooklyn, New York, James Smith Pierce received his PhD in art history from Harvard University. During his career as a professor, Pierce also became an accomplished artist, whose artworks were included in important exhibitions (including a show on land art at the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington, DC) and books on contemporary earthworks and site-specific sculpture. Pierce was also a photographer, exhibition curator, and art collector.

Additional Information

In 1947, doctors told Charles (1901-1985) that he had only a short time to live unless he moved to a hot, dry climate. He first moved to to the Death Valley area, but in 1960, he moved to Yuma, Arizona. This is where Driftwood Charley's World of Lost Art was created. He began sculpting in 1967, and his creations began to fill an area of about two and a half acres. The style he used was primarily influenced by his time with the U.S. Navy, as well as the desert terrain surrounding him. Most of the sculptures created were carved out of the stone, some of which include: figures from the Bible, creatures, and many other objects. Today, only rubble remains from the sculptures that once stood on the two-and-a-half-acre property. Travel to the area is not recommended.

This is one of the many sculptures that once stood in the area. This image was captured ca. 1976. Today, it no longer stands and has been reduced to rubble. This sculpture depicts a person and could be of biblical reference.

Image is provided for educational purposes only. © University of North Dakota. All rights reserved.

Condition Notes

35 mm slide in excellent condition.


Image Location