HOUSE OF HADES
ONE MAN VERSUS
In the early eighties when the tiles started appearing in Philadelphia, the message on these small, public screeds was:
Toynbee Tiles, or at least the first generation of them, seem to be the work of a single man who believed he had discovered the secret of immortality in the writings of historian Arnold Toynbee, found confirmation of this possibility in the death sequence at the end of the Kubrick film 2001: A Space Odyssey, and felt an obsessive need to inform the human race that we could resurrect the dead. I can't remember what Jupiter has to do with it, but I like to think it's got something to do with Sun Ra.
The method for disseminating this concept, as well as other rants (mainly against "the media machine," sometimes anti-semitic, and often paranoid,) is to cut the message into linoleum tile, cover the edges of the tile with asphalt sealer and the top with tar paper -and proceed to drop it onto a busy street in the middle of the night, often in crosswalks. As vehicles drive over the tile, it is pushed into the street and eventually the paper comes off, revealing the message. Toynbee Tiles are found all over North America and in some parts of South America. There's an excellent, must-watch 2011 documentary film about the search for the Toynbee Tiler called "Resurrect Dead: The Mystery of The Toynbee Tiles."