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from decades

Metamorphosis: Cockroach Vitamin Pills

1981, New York This hoax involved a cult leader; a panacea; and a crowd of adoring followers. On May 22, 1981, Skaggs converted an apartment into a laboratory, filled it with the world’s largest collection of cockroach art and memorabilia, and he and his congregation staged a press conference for the media. He introduced himself as Dr.…

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Celebrity Sperm Bank 1976

In July of 1976, Giuseppe Scaggoli, proprietor of the Celebrity Sperm Bank, planned to hold an auction of rock star sperm. The sperm bank promised, “We’ll have sperm from the likes of Mick Jagger, Bob Dylan, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, and vintage sperm from Jimmy Hendricks. All donations are certified and authenticated.” Scaggoli (a.k.a. Joey…

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Cathouse for Dogs 1976

“Cat House for Dogs,” said an ad in the Village Voice, “featuring a savory selection of hot bitches…” Along with this ad, a press release was sent to the media saying that if your dog graduated from obedience school, if it was his birthday, or if he was just horny, for $50 you could get…

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Hippie Bus Tour to Queens 1968

Artist Joey Skaggs, having lived on the Lower East Side for a number of years, grew increasingly annoyed by the tourist buses that would cruise through St. Marks Place in the East Village gawking at the long haired hippies. Squares from suburbia, acting as if they were touring a zoo, snapped photos from the safety…

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Crucifixion 1966-69

As a young artist living on the Lower East Side of new York City, Skaggs created a two hundred pound sculpture depicting a naked rotting skeletal corpse with a human skull, barbed wire crown of thorns, long human hair, and a metal penis dangling between the legs to protest the hypocrisy of the Church and…

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