The Cadillac Ranch is a unique public art installation located just outside Amarillo, Texas, along the historic Route 66. Erected in 1974 by a group of artists known as the Ant Farm, the Cadillac Ranch has become an iconic symbol of American roadside culture and a must-see attraction for travelers along Route 66.
The installation consists of ten brightly painted Cadillac cars buried nose-first in the ground, arranged in a line facing west. The cars, which date from the late 1940s to the early 1960s, are partially buried at an angle that corresponds to that of the Great Pyramid of Giza. The result is a surreal and striking sight that has captured the imaginations of visitors for nearly five decades.
The Cadillac Ranch was created by a group of artists led by Chip Lord and Doug Michels, who were members of the radical architecture collective known as the Ant Farm. The group’s goal was to create a monument to the American automobile, which they saw as an icon of American freedom and individualism.
The installation quickly became a popular destination for travelers along Route 66, and over the years, visitors have added their own touches to the cars, spray-painting messages and graffiti on the vehicles. The artists themselves encouraged this participatory aspect of the installation, seeing it as a way to engage with the public and create a dialogue about American culture and identity.
Today, the Cadillac Ranch remains a popular tourist attraction, drawing visitors from around the world to experience its unique blend of art, history, and pop culture. The site is open to the public 24 hours a day, and visitors are encouraged to bring their own spray paint and leave their mark on the cars.
The Cadillac Ranch has become a beloved symbol of American roadside culture, a testament to the enduring appeal of the open road and the spirit of adventure that has driven travelers along Route 66 for generations.