Too Much? Charles Manson Masks Made... Using His Ashes

Even a 'true crime collector' thinks this piece of murderabilia goes too far
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 30, 2019 3:48 PM CST
Too Much? Charles Manson Masks Made... Using His Ashes
In this 1969, file photo, Charles Manson is escorted to his arraignment on conspiracy-murder charges in connection with the Sharon Tate murder case.   (AP Photo/File)

"Murderabilia" is already controversial, but this piece of murder memorabilia may go too far even for collectors: Two Charles Manson masks have been created ... purportedly using the cult leader and murderer's actual cremated remains. Artist Ryan Almighty told TMZ earlier this month that he and mask-maker Rick 'Sik Rik' Fisher not only included Manson's ashes in the masks, which are for their own personal collections, but actual human blood as well. Almighty now tells Rolling Stone that since the masks made headlines, "I’ve gotten a lot of death threats. I’ve gotten a lot of hate from people who are actually Manson devotees." He says some are "superstitious" about the use of Manson's ashes, while others find it disrespectful.

Even longtime "true crime collector" Michael Channels—Manson's longtime penpal who is still fighting for control of the killer's remains and estate—takes issue with the masks, noting that other murderabilia items don't contain actual human remains. "The artists [are] treating the deceased’s remains in a disrespectful manner with total disregard to the decedent, his family, the estate of, and the process of the court," he tells Rolling Stone. "They are clearly doing it all for profit and the narcissistic attention they require. It has nothing to do with a mask or art." Almighty claims he got Manson's ashes from someone who attended the killer's funeral; he previously created a painting that he says included the ashes that ended up at the Haunted Museum in Las Vegas, and he also says he used the ashes in a tattoo given to another Manson penpal. (More Charles Manson stories.)

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