Lee Ping-hsing is a salesman in Changhua County in Taiwan. He is also a big Michael fan and has created scarecrows resembling Michael to chase away birds in his parents’ fields in central Taiwan.
He came upon the idea with a hint of humor, in reference to one of Michael’s trademark moves. “During harvest, my dad would go to the fields every day to chase away the birds. And I thought, since Michael is good at ‘grabbing his bird,’ I’d invite Michael to grab birds in our fields,” Lee Ping-hsing said.
Lee, who likes to imitate Michael’s style of dancing, said he was inspired by his idol to create his artworks. He uses a wooden skeleton for the body, sponge for the face then dresses up the scarecrow with Michael-style costumes, including the famous white sequined glove. To make each scarecrow unique, the 30-year-old milk powder salesman poses his scarecrows to resemble the music icon’s signature moves, as in ‘Thriller’ for example.
Some of Lee’s family do not approve of the scarecrows. “I was yelled at by my grandpa. He said his spirit could come back and haunt us, but I think it would be nice if Michael could come over,” Lee said.
Some passers-by were amused by the unusual scarecrows standing in the rice fields. “This is so different from normal traditions. I never thought I would see Michael Jackson chasing birds in the field,” said a local resident.
Lee has already completed two Michael scarecrows and is currently working on a third one. He has also painted an image of his idol on the wall of his house.
Michael took the part of the Scarecrow in a 1978 movie adaptation of ‘The Wiz.’