The Tiresome Tabernacle was built by the artist Jay Critchley in 2001 not far from the new Wastewater Treatment Plant, 200 Route 6. A commentary on energy wastefulness and environmental recklessness, it consisted originally of an eight-foot stack of used car tires atop a five-foot platform in a sunken pit. The platform remains, looking like a mysterious altar.
This is Critchley’s description from his Day Without Oil site: “For years I passed by the discarded car tires that lined the dirt road around Clapp’s Pond where I cross country ski whenever snow appears in this Cape-tip wilderness. Used as barriers for dirt bikes buzzing close to the pond, bordering the Cape Cod National Seashore, the tires were spent, incongruous — tired.
“The trail winds up a dune to a flat clearing amidst scrub pine where there is an unexplainable sand pit in the ground. Before the Town of Provincetown decided to clean up the area and remove the tires, I was inspired to create the Tiresome Tabernacle — a tired planet in 2001. A circular platform was constructed on the floor of the pit and the 60-plus tires formed a spiraling pyramid on top. The space below the tires – open on the sides – was a place for meditation, rest and conversation. Weekly, throughout the summer, groups would visit for performances, readings and socializing.”