Human beings can build incredible things. Incredibly weird, fascinating, and oddball things. Say what you want about homo sapiens, no one can deny that we’re uniquely talented at creating awesome objects from weird materials. Perhaps that’s how our civilization made it to the space age.
The following items have probably not contributed to the evolution of our race (except for one). But they undoubtedly highlight how resourceful people can be—and, dare I say it, creative.
And weird. Did we mention that?
Sculptures Made From Anthills
Time to throw out your Thomas Kinkade. Add some culture to your living room with this flashy new decorative piece… a molten anthill sculpture.
You read that correctly.
Have you ever wondered where ants go after they make off with your bread crumbs? Ever wish you explore their crib from top to bottom? Now you can.
Anthill sculptures are created when molten aluminum is poured into an anthill. It seeps all the way down to the bottom, filling out tunnels and chambers. Once the aluminum hardens, it’s excavated from the soil, and you’re left with a spectacular aluminum sculpture of ant colony tunnel networks.
You’ll enjoy these sculptures if you’re a fan of contemporary art. Or if you want to place the remains of a fire ant colony on your kitchen counter—as a proclamation of your genetic dominance and as a warning to other potential trespassers.
On that note, these sculptures have incited a bit of controversy. While some sculptures were made from abandoned anthills, others were not (it should be noted that pouring molten substances into anthills has been used by local governments as a means to eliminate invasive species of ants).
Regardless of your take on the subject, these sculptures are aesthetically awesome.
Jewelry Made From Hair
For hundreds of years, human hair has been used to craft jewelry. In the Victorian Era, especially, it was common practice to cut snippets of your hair and braid them into little pieces of jewelry. They would fashion wreaths, rings, necklaces, and clothing accessories out of hair.
Commonly, hair was cut from a recently deceased person and braided into a memento. Ladies would collect snippets of their friends’ hair and place them in autograph books. A man might carry his wife’s braid to work or on long travels. How romantic.
Back in the day, hair collection was a rather sentimental, sometimes trendy practice. Of course, if you asked for a snippet of someone’s hair in modern times, you might be received by a restraining order.
Learn how to make your own hair jewelry here.
Shoes Made from Recycled Plastic
The 21st Century has seen a new interest in goods made from recycled materials, and the fashion industry is no exception. Get this—you can wear plastic shoesmade from recycled plastic bottles!
You probably just imagined yourself going about on your morning stroll, your feet crunching down on a plastic Arrowhead bottle with each step. But it’s not so. A variety of shoe brands have found ways to incorporate recycled bottles into stylish and comfortable kicks.
This is probably the most important item on our list when it comes to human advancement. Three cheers for developments in green technology!
Cups Made From Skulls
Like hair jewelry, creating drinking cups from skulls isn’t a new practice. Actually, we would be very concerned if you found a newly created one on the market.
The human skull has been used as a drinking cup for thousands of years across a variety of cultures. Why? Depends on the time and place it was created. In some cultures, drinking from a skull cup served a ritualistic purpose. In other cultures, it was a symbol of tribal dominance, the skulls having been collected from the bodies of conquered enemies. In other cultures, it was only that some weirdo found a skull and turned it into a cup (*cough cough* Lord Byron).
We’ll stick with our “World’s Best Dad” mugs.
Books Made From Skin
If you couldn’t tell by now, you can craft some morbidly-fascinating things from human body parts. But this one might just take the macabre cake.
There exist books that have been bound by human skin.
There’s a real word for this: “anthropodermic bibliopegy”. According to the Anthropodermic Book Project, 18 books contained in various librariesaround the world have been confirmed to have been bound by human skin.
How was the skin obtained? Oftentimes it was collected or commissioned by medical doctors and researchers, usually from the bodies of executed criminals.
Those surgeons would have to pay per back.
House Made From LEGO Bricks
Your childhood dream has come true. British television presenter James May built the world’s first full-size houseconstructed entirely of LEGO bricks. Six million bricks, to be exact.
James May built the house in 2009 to promote his show “James May’s Toy Stories”. He received the bricks via donation from the Lego Group and he enlisted the help of nearly 1,000 volunteers to construct it. The architecture may be considered… eh… contemporary. But it has lots of bells and whistles. There’s a working window, a kitchen, and even a bed (you’d probably prefer to sleep on dirt, though).
The house was valued at about $750,000 by an art collector. Unfortunately, due to some legal disputes, the house was demolished not long after it was built.
No need to fret! Partnered with Airbnb, the Lego Group completed their own lego housein Denmark in 2017.