Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Ed "Big Daddy" Roth (March 4, 1932 - April 4, 2001) was an artist and the creator of "Rat Fink " and other characters, custom car builder, and one of the people responsible for the "Kustom Kulture" / Hot rod movement of the 1960s in Southern California. He's best known for his grotesque caricatures, typified by "Rat Fink," depicting imaginative, outsized monstrosities driving representations of the hot rods he and his contemporaries were building. He's less well known for his innovative work in turning Hot Rodding from crude backyard engineering where performance was the bottom line into a refined artform where aesthetics were equally important, breaking new ground with fiberglass bodywork. He's also known as "Mr. Gasser" to the hot-rodding community. He kept active in the field of counter-culture art and hot-rodding his entire adult life, and passed away working on an innovative hot-rod project involving a compact car that was a radical departure from the dominant "tuner" performance modification style.
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