Bizarre Lives: #1 Peter Camani and the Screaming Heads

BIZARRE LIVES:: I will be devoting a section of my blog to stories of bizarre and intriguing people and their lives/or alternatively, places and their owners. If you have anyone/place in mind, please forward your idea to tborody@gmail.com.

Last summer, a friend invited me 165 miles north of Toronto to an old farm land. At the entrance, a massive white gate made of steel spider webs arched between 2 giant brick pillars.

We open the gates to a stone castle- fantasy film worthy- with a two-headed dragon chimney at the top and peacocks running free range.

There we met Peter Camani, owner and lone resident of the enchanted Midlothian Castle (Midlothian Ridge) near Burk’s Falls Ontario and creator of the Screaming Heads sculpture garden (see photo below). Peter began building up his empire in 1989 and continues each summer. Camani is a painter, sculptor and filmmaker as well. His home remains his largest project yet and it continues to grow.

Inside the castle of endless stairs and hallways and secret rooms, lie the remnants and bodies of many creative projects past. Masks and baby heads are mounted in various places; eyeballs rolling off the dinner table. Bubblegum machines and skeletons hanging overhead; a dead butterfly aquarium in the bathroom and upstairs, costume rooms where we would transform ourselves into gypsies and venture into the woods to dance.

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