A Mad Unicorn Halloween

Of all the spectacles we’ve offered our neighborhood, this Halloween was the biggest– and the weirdest. This year we gave away approximately 40 pounds of candy to over 500 kids. That was the most candy we’ve had in the house ever, and the most visitors to the house ever. So by those measures, our careening creative process was a success. We received some pleasant compliments–thanks, all–but the best was overhearing one visitor telling another that they come every year to see what we cook up. A subjective measure, to be sure, but a portent of happiness to come.

We began the process as a dive into Jules Verne’s proto-sci-fi classic, Journey to the Center of the Earth. I read it; it was tedious, though not nearly as somnolent as Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Judging by my response to these Steampunk staples, I’m always going to be a wanna-be. We watched two Journey movies; both were funny, sometimes, and rather different from one another. It’s a very simple story, really; and without the inscrutable Victorian relationship between nephew and uncle, plucky bootstrapper and venerable professor, one that directors seem compelled to spice up. Once I understood that, I rushed the Unicorns along towards my dreams of giant low-poly Fungi. 

What actually happened was a black light underground crystal land, with floating spheres, unnerving performance art and, of course, loads of candy. The world we presented came about because the initial visions–giant fungi and giant dinosaurs–both proved technically impossible with my chosen visual vocabulary–PVC sticks and “octopi” connectors, invented by Arne Gulerud. I lurched from one attempt at giant-ness to another with this stuff, aided by stalwart Unicorns, but eventually I had to admit defeat. From there, the Unicorns came up with all kinds of brilliant ideas, and we threw it all together.And somehow it worked! Black light is pretty magic. 

And so are Unicorns!

Thanks, guys. I can’t wait ‘til our next spectacle!

Thank you to the Mad Unicorns:
Kathryn Fearnside
Mindy Grossberg
Kristin Satterlee
Arne Gulerud
Kris Harden
Faith Holland

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