Exploring the Quirky Public Art in Joshua Tree, California

Joshua Tree National Park

This past fall I went camping in Joshua Tree National Park. I wasn’t expecting much out of Joshua Tree because I figured it was just a bunch of rocks and weird-looking trees and what would be cool about that? And yeah, it was just a bunch of rocks and weird-looking trees but somehow that turned out to be a winning combination (I know. Who knew?). I think Joshua Tree officially beats out Bryce as my favorite national park. I highly recommend camping at The Jumbo Rocks campground; it’s like waking up on an alien planet. Pretty neat!

Adding to the appeal of Joshua Tree was, of course, the weirdo art (cause I’m teeny bit obsessed with weird art!). Here are some photos from two of the exhibits I visited.

Noah Purifoy’s Outdoor Desert Art Museum

Location: Joshua Tree

Cost: Free!

The 7.5 acre “museum” (junk yard?!) is located off of a dirt road in the heart of the town of Joshua Tree. The artist, Noah Purifoy, created all of his sculptures between 1989 and 2004.

Noah Purifoy Art Sculpture


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Cabin in Outdoor art museum

This one was my favorite!

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Not sure what the significance of these toilets are…

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The Glass Outhouse Art Gallery

Location: The town of 29 Palms, California (30 minutes outside of Joshua Tree)

Cost: Free!

This is about 30 minutes outside of Joshua Tree, but it’s on the way if you’re driving to Las Vegas, which makes it a quick roadside stop.

Glass Outhouse Art Gallery

Church Glass Outhouse Gallery

There was a real church located on the gallery’s property.

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Here’s my dog Frankie, taking a break from wandering around the art. It was hot out!

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The 7 Deadly Sins…buried in the “cemetery” next to the church

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Ghoul's Gym

Glasshouse Outhouse Gallery Body Sculpture

A dead body?!

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This one was my favorite.

Other Weird Art Installations You Can Find in the California/Nevada Desert:

A Car Forest in Goldfield, Nevada

Murals Painted on Rocks in Chloride, Arizona

Giant Ghost Statues in Rhyolite, Nevada

Know of any other cool art in Joshua Tree? Hit me up on Twitter and let me know!

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