Cave-digging Artist Finds Inspiration Underground

In 1990, He Isolated Himself In A Desert. 25 Years Later, THIS Was Discovered.

In the history of art there’s only been one artist who was crazy enough to carve a mountain… until now. It took Gutzon Borglum 14 years and 400 workers to sculpt Mt. Rushmore, but artist Ra Paulette has been working alone for 25 years, using no power tools to transform these New Mexico cave system into one of a kind piece of art.

Some might call him crazy, but in reality, this is the man who found his passion. It’s weird that Ra’s work has been relatively unnoticed until recently when the documentary about his never-ending endeavor got an Oscar nomination and people began recognizing his work. Epic.

For the past 25 years, Ra Paulette has been carving out man-made caves from the sandstone hills of New Mexico, and then sculpting these spaces into works of art he calls wilderness shrines. Lee Cowan has the story of an artist who does his best work underground.