Over the past week, you may have seen or heard of the quite frankly extraterrestrial story of a huge metal monolith that has randomly appeared in the Utahdesert only to vanish just a few days after being discovered.
The 12-foot tall sculpture was discovered by the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources team when they were counting sheep in the southeastern area of the state when they spotted the monolith from their helicopter but like everyone else, they were very confused as to what it actually was, how it had gotten then and who or what had made it.
Immediately there were many jokes and comparisons to the mysteries monolith seen on Stanley Kubrick’s classic science fiction movie 2001: A Space Odyssey as it does bear a striking resemblance to something from outer space. There is no proof to say if it was made by aliens and placed on Earth by a UFO but it has definitely captured the imagination of conspiracy theorists and Alien enthusiasts.
However, Utah officials aren’t keen on the idea of anyone placing sculptures in the middle of the desert, no matter where they are from.
Official statement: "Although we can't comment on active investigations, we would like to remind public land visito… https://t.co/SjmwmogjDZ
— Bureau of Land Management Utah (@Bureau of Land Management Utah)
Now that the sculpture has reportedly vanished will only add to the mystery of the entire thing but it gets even stranger. Although officials have refused to reveal exactly where they found the monolith online detectives on Reddit searched through the Utah desert and managed to locate what appears to be the sculpture nestled in amongst the rocks.
Some further investigating found that by using the historical view on Google Earth, the sculpture was photographed in October 2016 and August 2015. This begs the question of how did nobody spot it before then?
To add to this Lieutenant Nick Street, a spokesperson for the Department of Public Safety believes that it could have been there "40, 50 years maybe more." He is quoted by the Daily Mail as saying:
It's the type of material that doesn't degrade with the elements. It may only be a few years old, who knows. There's no real way based on the material it's made out of how long it's actually been there.
There have been more logical suggestions as to what it might be. Minimalist artist John McCracken, who passed away in 2011, has been linked to the sculpture as it could have either been him or his former students paying tribute to him. However, some of his contemporaries, like Ed Ruscha and James Hayward have told the New York Times that it is unlikely to have been McCracken.