In 2018, the Maternal Mitochondria creative team went to Japan. There we saw so many kinds of spirit houses—from Shinto shrines to municipal pagodas to small portable altars. When we came home to New Mexico, we wanted to build our own.
The initial three fairy houses are open! (We hope to create a total of nine). Each is made of recycled metal. And each houses a poem that tells the tale of its denizens—the supernatural creatures who work and party in each.
The Cabin is lit up from within by the fire of the earth’s core. Brownie miners descend to seek riches in the earth.
The Cantina is a way station where fire foxes—messengers of the divine—can take a break from their delivery rounds and have a drink.
The Mushroom is a landing pad for winged pixies, even as it is part of the natural cycle of birth and decay.
The fairy houses were fabricated by Tim Brown, using melt scraps to tell a story. Poetry by Miriam Sagan, suminagashi scrolls by Isabel Winson-Sagan.
Fires of the underworld shine through the cabin’s floor
Miners toil in the depths, always seeking more.
Crystal, beryl, amethyst, the gold that is not fools
So hack with picks of veins of glittering diamond jewels.
These spirits of the earth need foamy beer and rest
Although no hour or month tells them to do their best.
Like ants deep in the ground they work away
Never really knowing if it is night or day.
A garden grows of living jewels and silver spice
To harvest gives a meaning to the miner’s life.
Feeds on decay, is phosphorescent
Destruction turned to luminescence.
Scavenger that cannot move
Sometimes poison, sometimes food.
On the forest floor a perfect ring
Umbrellaed with a cap and stem.
Spores that float upon the air
With a flock of pixies there.
A landing pad for those who fly
Wind spread by moonlight, through the sky.
Fire foxes on their errand rounds
Stop at the road house, come to ground.
Drink some hot and fiery liquor
Red in the glass, then turning sunset yellow.
Kitsune can shape shift into human form
And have a job—divine delivery—to perform.
The nine-tailed fox is wise and old
Steps into the cantina out of the cold.
The world’s mysterious, beautiful, and strange
This is the message as the fire foxes range.
They are located on the walking path at Santa Fe Skies RV Park. This is the site of a former installation by Maternal Mitochondria, the sculpture and poetry path featuring golden cages and painted eggs.
We’re excited to have something easy to share during this time of social distancing.
Free and Open to the Public.
Please come take a look!
Come discover the Fairy Houses!
On the dog walking path, about midway, in Santa Fe Skies RV Park.
An outdoor treasure hunt with social distancing.
Find three sculptures—a cabin, a cantina, and a mushroom.
Carefully open the doors to find a scroll hidden inside, which tells the tales of the magical creatures who work and inhabit these abodes. Meet pixies, brownie miners, and fire foxes.
Read, enjoy, and carefully return the scrolls so others can find them.
They will be lit up at night.
Appropriate for children, with adult supervision. For grown-ups too!
The sculptures are of recycled metal and are somewhat delicate. Handle with care.
Send us your photos, comments, or even write your own stories! Write us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you, and have fun.
—The Fairy House Team