In Allaire State Park in New Jersey, something prehistoric lurks in the woods: Dinosaurs! These massive, skeletal creatures are made from local materials found in the park such as fallen branches, bark, and other items, and for several years, it was a mystery who was making and leaving these structures in the forest.
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But recently, the artist was revealed to be a woman named Robin Ruggiero, who started building the dinosaurs in 2019 when she was hiking through the woods in a “dark place” emotionally. “Kind of felt like that's what I had to get out a lot of anger, T-rex type of emotions, and it worked. It really has changed my life,” she told reporters after her identity was revealed.
Since learning who is responsible for these works, fans have affectionately dubbed the area in which her sculptures appear, “Robinswoods.” The collection currently includes the aforementioned T-Rex, as well as statues of a triceratops, a stegosaurus, a baby pteranodon strung up between trees with rope , a brontosaurus, and lately, a butterfly.
Allaire State Park can be found in Northeastern New Jersey, and far from being upset about the guerrilla art project, the authorities are leaning all the way in to their unexpected tourist attraction. They have marked the location out on camp maps. If you plan to visit, the dinos are located toward the southern side of the park, near the group campground area.
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As for Ruggiero, she’s still getting used to the acclaim and the honorary naming rights of the woods. “"Being out here, and all the people, they have helped me so much. It's part of my healing, paving my path."