Lori Zimmer

Herb Williams' Flaming Sculptures Made From Thousands of Crayons Increase Wildfire Awareness

by , 10/14/11

Unwanted Visitor: Portrait of Wildfire, National Heritage Center, green design, eco design, sustainable design, herb Williams, Texas, Widflire, crayon sculptures,

Five curling flames blaze to larger-than-life heights in Williams’ new piece, “Unwanted Visitor: Portrait of Wildfire.” The installation has been created outside the National Heritage Center in Lubbock, Texas. Set in a dirt field near historic stone dwellings, the five flame sculptures represent the area’s wildfires, which are caused by the intense Texas heat. The heat will also take a role in the installation, melting the crayons as time goes on. Wildfires are a serious environmental issue for the ranching community in Texas, and Williams’ installation brings awareness to the problem of the ever increasing temperature.

Twisting and turning as individual flames, each sculpture in the installation is colored with gradating rows of Crayola crayons. Hundreds of hot pinks are met with oranges that lead to yellow tips, and the completed sculptures stand as high as 8 feet. As the sculptures melt, the colors will shift in shape and intermingle, creating a blur of color. Like a wildfires, the sculptures will be affected by the elements – the wind blowing or sun beating down will determine the shape and state of the material each day.

The sculptures use a medium associated with children to illustrate a serious problem – environmental destruction. Hopefully the juxtaposition will help awaken wildfire awareness, and intrigue people to stake an interest in the Texan landscape. The installation will remain until the end of the year.

+ Herb Williams

Via This is Colossal

Images © Ashton Thornhill


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  1. Eric Eric October 15, 2011 at 3:42 am

    The contrast of the sculptures against the sky is quite dramatic.

  2. lazyreader October 14, 2011 at 2:15 pm

    That’s actually rather clever….If a fire did occur the sculpture’s would melt and let us know there was a fire.

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