Gallery: Artists Build Incredible Obelisk Out of Hundreds of Bicycles


California artists Mark Grieve and Ilana Spector recently constructed this incredible towering obelisk made entirely out of bikes on a street corner in Santa Rosa. Dubbed Cyclisk, the monument is an ode to bike culture constructed from 340 bicycles and one tricycle.

The 10,000 pound, 65 foot-tall behemoth was, strangely enough, built with help from Nissan. Apparently, Santa Rosa’s “1% for art” law requires major construction projects to donate money to public art projects. Nissan is building a dealership in the city, so it chose to contribute cash to the $37,000 piece of artwork.

Regardless of the project’s background, we’re happy to see old bike parts being put to good use. As Spector noted in a statement, “Collecting unusable parts from the debris piles of nonprofit community bike projects has proven to be a win-win; community bike DIY places are thrilled unusable parts are not becoming land fill and the City is psyched the sculpture will solidify Santa Rosa as bike-friendly.”

+ Santa Rosa Public Art

Via Wired Gadget Lab

Photos © Ilana Spector


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  1. Rowcar September 14, 2012 at 8:00 pm

    One of the reasons I still like this town.

  2. bioinspiration September 26, 2010 at 4:31 am

    No wonder Nissan sponsored this ludicrous ego statement – as emc2mm said, its a monument to the death of the bicycle, and a celebration of waste. All those wonderful stories – the miles cycled – heartlessly imprisoned into this anti-natural form, that summons images of robotic phalluses or Egyptian slave labour. Unless its supposed to be ironic?

  3. ulong September 25, 2010 at 2:12 am

    Oh the scared bicycle as a disposable commodity. Yes some elevate the bicycle to the savior of the planet. Yet it is still fills land fills.

  4. emc2mm September 24, 2010 at 1:30 am

    This misses the mark. The pile of bikes is a head stone for the death of the bikes, An obelisk has information on its exterior to act as a guide to all a type of universal knowledge, this shows how mass consumption, waste, and low product performance results in trash. I am unclear how this celebrates a town and or its bike worthlessness. This in not recycling, Recycling would result in new material – new bikes, or something useful – re purposed. One can make the empire state building out of beer cans, but it does not celebrate the building, or the creation of the building, or the energy, or the creativity – only you can use a given material to make a shape. I think something is missing. The amount of entrapped energy, screams waste. Was that the intent?

  5. Ferdinand September 12, 2010 at 2:54 am

    This is outrageous! the compression is the landmark signature of Cesar Baldaccini (1921-1998). Whether those so called artists know his life time work and it is plagiary or they don’t and they should (at least) learn contemporary art history.

  6. blacksmith_tb September 9, 2010 at 2:28 pm

    Would community bike centers have landfilled recyclable metal scraps? That seems hard to believe… Still, it’s a likable piece of public art, which is a good use of materials.

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