If you are in the Sedona area and want to see something unique and off the beaten path, you might try visiting Eliphante Village. This three acre sculptural art installation is located in Cornville, about 20 miles south of Sedona. There are several artistic structures, which are made out of mainly ‘found materials’. It is an inspirational work of art that is well worth seeing!
Eliphante Village was started by Michael Kahn and Leda Livant Kahn, in the late 70’s, when they were invited to become caretakers of this riparian land in Cornville near Oak Creek. They lived on the land, using their truck for shelter. Being an artist, Michael began to use his aesthetics to build ornate structures out of natural materials, such as sandstone and drift wood, which he found in the area. He also used recycled materials, which he found or were given to him, such as glass, foil, tile, metal and artificial turf from tennis court that were being up graded. Michael had no formal architectural training or building experience. The structures he built are in a freeform style. The first building was named Eliphante. Over the next 28 years, with help from Leda and other friends, Michael created several structures, including the Hipadome and Pipe Dreams. These structures became Michael and Leda’s home, workshops and studios. When Michael died in 2007, Leda moved to New Mexico where her son lived. Without a caretaker, Eliphante Village started to deteriorate.
Eliphante, LTD is a member supported, volunteer run, 501-C that is working to save the art installation. They have been able to raise enough funds to purchase the three acres around the structures. They continue to raise funds and take donations of materials to maintain and improve the buildings in the village. There are caretakers living on the land, again and Leda is around sometimes.
If you are interested in visiting, you need to make an appointment or go to a scheduled event, as they do not have regular business hours. Their web address is www.eliphante.org and you can contact them though the website. The website also has a calendar of events.
©2016.Dawn Gould, Owner of Sedona Olde Time Photos. All rights reserved.