Our vanishing giant Indian statues

Oversized Indian at Thunderbird Hotel

Habituees of the Thunderbird Hotel near the Mall of America (it’s right behind the Ikea), get ready for a shock. The giant Indian statues that ring the building (essayed in depth by James Lileks) are gone. Gone. All of them, but for the nearly hidden — and relatively tiny — statue of Chief Thunderbird at the hotel’s entrance.

The building has been remodeled several time over the past few years, and those of us who love it’s kitschy sensibility (including it’s magnificent Pow Wow Lounge) can’t help but worry that the statue’s disappearance might signal a shift toward a more restrained sensibility. Will this be another magnificently tasteless Minnesota landmark that converts itself into bland tastefulness?

7 Comments so far

  1. Aaron Landry (unregistered) on July 17th, 2006 @ 10:40 pm

    Actually, I’m surprised it was up that long. “Kitschy” really was the right word.

    Hey wait… Max? What are you doing over here? Ha!


  2. Max Sparber (unregistered) on July 17th, 2006 @ 10:43 pm

    Obviously I’m not the only one who pops up on multiple blogs, s4xton.

    I’ve just got too much to say!

  3. Aaron Landry (unregistered) on July 17th, 2006 @ 10:52 pm

    The Bartel Cartel can only take so much of the Max.

  4. Adam (unregistered) on July 18th, 2006 @ 2:56 am

    Aw, man! That should have been preserved as a reminder of all that is weird about America, like those horribly racist Bugs Bunny shorts.

  5. Erica (unregistered) on July 18th, 2006 @ 8:43 am

    How have I never heard of this?

    I can never tell with Native American stuff. That line between kitschy and racist moves around a lot.

  6. Dave Dash (unregistered) on July 18th, 2006 @ 8:48 am

    Let’s hide these statues in an effort to not draw attention to the fact that this hotel was built on their backs.

  7. taylor (unregistered) on July 18th, 2006 @ 8:50 am

    This is Incredible.

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