PHOTO COURTESY OF UTAH DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY
Monoliths are huge, 3 meter metal structures that appear and disappear at random times and at random places.
The first monolith was discovered on Nov. 18, 2020 in the middle of a Utah desert. However, using historical Google Earth satellite images, online detectives found they first appeared in Oct. 2016. This sparked a chain reaction of more than 70 monoliths popping up around the world from California to Australia.
Many conspiracy theories have been developed. Some people think aliens dropped them and others claim the dead sculptor, John McCracken, made them.
John McCracken was a simplistic sculptor who loved science fiction and died in 2011. According to The New York Times, his son claimed that the first monolith was a John McCracken piece. He explained that McCracken loved the idea of extraterrestrial beings visiting Earth and would do something like this to resemble aliens.
However, McCracken’s close friend, Ed Ruscha, said “It’s unlike him [McCracken] to be a trickster of someone. A monolith in the desert? It’s so universal that it could be anybody.”
James Hayward, another one of McCracken’s close friends said “I looked at the corners as much as I could; they are made by a machine called a brake, which bends metal. When you bend metal with a machine, the corners are not sharp and crisp. They’re rounded.” McCracken preferred making his sculptures by hand.
Matty Monahan, known professionally as Matty Mo, has also been making indirect claims of being the creator of the monoliths. Monahan is a Mexican contemporary artist who created The Most Famous Artist, a group of artists who sell and promote their works on Instagram. His group posted a picture of a monolith he was creating on Instagram and announced he would be selling monoliths for $45,000 each on Dec. 4, 2020. He admitted that The Most Famous Artist has installed monoliths before, although he neither confirmed nor denied if he was the one to make the first monolith in Utah.
Some think the monoliths are unlike anything we’ve seen before. Others realized similarities to past events that have happened.
Freshman Brandon Kopp of Marlboro said that this is the “2020 version of Stonehenge. Maybe in 100 years, in our grandkids’ history classes, there’s going to be a lesson about the monoliths of 2020.”
Junior Jacob Irwin of Middletown, the host of the radio show The Agents of Chaos, said
“It’s possible that the first one stood for something, like eluding to a possible 2001: A Space Odyssey remake…but after that it probably just became a trend or was a clout seeking thing. I do have to say that I am slowly going insane trying to keep track of them all because there have been what seems like dozens of them.”