Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Plastic pink flamingo creator goes underground

Don Featherstone & his creation
Don Featherstone, who invented the plastic pink flamingo that lives on millions of American lawns, died Monday at the age of 79 with 59 plastic pink flamingos on his Fitchburg, Massachusetts lawn.

He was awarded an Ig Nobel Prize, an annual satirical award honoring outré contributions, in 1996.

His creation -- Phoenicopterus ruber plasticus -- spawned director John Waters’s “Pink Flamingos,” the 1972 gallows comedy starring drag queen Divine and “Gnomeo & Juliet,” Disney’s 2011 animated feature with a pink-flamingo character, voiced by Jim Cummings, named Featherstone.

In 2009 the Madison, Wisconsin Common Council designated the plastic pink flamingo the city’s official bird.

He was the author, with Tom Herzing, of a 1999 photographic book, “The Original Pink Flamingos: Splendor on the Grass.”

Featherstone was president of Union Products  until his 2000 retirement.

When Union Products ceased to exist, the Cado Company of Fitchburg took over manufacturing the American icon.

No comments: