In the sandstone hills of northern New Mexico, you may come across Ra Paulette. You will find him digging into the sides of a hill and if you happen to see what he is doing, you will be in for an amazing treat.
Ra never went to school for architecture or sculpting and never studied structural engineering, but when he saw these hills, he found his passion. His passion is cave sculpting.
What he creates in the hillsides he calls “the cave effect,” which he describes as “It has a lot to do with the juxtaposition of opposites: the sense of being under ground with the light streaming in; the intimacy of being in a cave, yet the columns end up very large, sometimes thirty to forty feet high.”
He has been doing this for the past 25 years. He has gone mostly unnoticed, even though he has done some commissioned work which includes sculpted caves that are entirely livable, with plumbing and electricity. Despite the grandiosity of what he does, he uses only hand tools and has even spent two years on a commissioned cave while charging only $12 an hour for his work. Check out this video to learn more about his art and to see the images of the amazing cave sculpting he has done.