Hail to the Chiefs

Houston artist David Adickes finds new homes for his massive presidential busts

Seven of the heads (those of Washington, Jefferson, Jackson, Lincoln, Wilson and both Roosevelts) are four feet taller than the rest. They are, according to Adickes's poll of historians throughout the country, the seven most important. But Adickes's favorite is Bush 41, who bought a painting from Adickes in 1965, and who posed for Adickes's sculpture, on display at Bush Intercontinental Airport.

Adickes's second set of heads, earmarked for Williamsburg, is on display in his studio parking lot, 2500 Summer Street. Inside his warehouse, he and his crew are putting the finishing touches on the third set. Every day, busloads of retirees and individual visitors drop by to gaze at the heads before they're shipped halfway across the country.

Hundreds of years from now, with any luck, visitors to all three Presidents Parks will enjoy enough hot dogs and soft pretzels to avoid the necessity of cannibalism. Children will return years later with their own children, making sure that, unlike Easter Island's enigmatic noggins, the story behind the big presidential heads will never be forgotten.

David Adickes got the idea after seeing Mount Rushmore.
Daniel Kramer
David Adickes got the idea after seeing Mount Rushmore.

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