Doug Michels



Dolphins were the real passion of Doug Michels, an architect, designer and artist graduate of Yale and Harvard who devoted his life to the protection of marine life. His death, as the result of an accidental fall from an observation point when he was working as a consultant in the shooting of a film about dolphins and whales in Eden Bay (Australia), was the epilogue of a career that was always critical of the consumerist society. His most emblematic work is the Cadillac Ranch sculpture in Amarillo, Texas (1974), with ten Cadillacs jutting out of the ground. Media Burn – with a station wagon crashing into a wall of televisions – and Eternal Flame – a recreation of Kennedy’s assassination with the architect playing the role of Jackie – are some of the works that Michels carried out with Ant Farm, a design group he cofounded and that broke up ten years later, in 1968, after a fire destroyed its San Francisco studio. The group, which included names such as Chip Lord, Hudson Márquez and Curtis Schreier, earned fame thanks to its countercultural profile, reflection of both the hopes and fears of its generation. 

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