Unique caves of Ra Paulette
Ra Paulette is called an ordinary American. But it’s not true. He has no special education, as in youth, he was expelled from college; then he was fired from service in the US Navy. For many years he lived at the expense of the casual earnings.
But look at the pictures of these caves! Only a talented sculptor could create such a miracle. Real cave art! Ra Paulette personally, using picks and carts, digs huge tunnels in the sandstone and decorates the tunnel walls by all sorts of ornaments.
It all started with the fact that in 1985 he came to Dixon and found a job on the excavator. The man liked his job so much that he realized his calling in digging. The cave called «Heart Chamber» was his first job. Ra Paulette dug it in 1987 on public lands Arroyo Seco. The cave immediately became a popular local attraction and favorite place of interest for crowds of tourists. However, he was forced to bury it because it was dug without complying with the security measures. Ra Paulette began to receive orders for creation of new caves, but the sculptor has always refused, explaining it by the fact that he worked only with inspiration and couldn’t meet deadlines without it.
I bring to your attention an amazing underground world, consisting of 14 caves that have been created by this incredibly hard-working man. This place is located in the desert of New Mexico, near San Jose. For his work the artist uses an already existing crack or makes tunnels in the soft sandstone cliffs, creating a special underground space. All caves are different. They have different decoration of floral or abstract ornament, motives of wildlife and water elements; they have different size, artificial or natural light.
All these patterns are cut so skillfully that it seems that all this beauty was formed naturally. The caves are equipped as the rooms – there are benches and even wash basins, as well as meditation cameras. Ra Paulette says that you can heal your soul here. He has been already working on this major project for 10 years. “This work of lifetime” was named «magnum opus». The author doesn’t do it for money. He is confident that creates a unique place for people, where everyone can feel unity with the earth, think about “spiritual renewal and personal well being”. However, one of his caves called “The Tree of human kindness” was put up for sale and estimated at $ 995 000. It is located between the cities of Santa Fe and Taos.
The sculptor tried several times to hire workers, but couldn’t find understanding with them. He says that it is needed to feel this work and it is impossible to teach such handicraft. The only assistant of Ra Paulette is his faithful dog.
All his caves created within 25 years are called “Ra Caves”. After visiting these unbelievable caves, director and producer Jeffrey Karoff created a documentary film “Cavedigger” in 2013. It was even nominated for an Academy Award as Best Short Subject Documentary.