The world-famous 9th Street BMX Trails are about to get their very
own iconic art installation. Designed and fabricated by local artist
Taylor Brown, the towering “9th” sculpture will be placed front
and center of the park’s entrance in South Duncan Park to welcome
riders of all ages.
The large letterforms will be composed of an outer shell of rolled
steel plate and reinforced with repurposed BMX frames, forks, handlebars
and other parts that act as internal support for the structure.
The bike parts are from the artist’s personal collection of cycling
memorabilia of almost fifteen years. The installation will be anchored
into the ground via a concrete foundation and color-matched to the
green of Austin’s iconic 9th Street signage. A steel-reinforced,
rebar base with supporting bolts will hold the sculpture in place.
Design Images, Dimensions and Renderings:
About the Artist:
Taylor Brown is an Artist and Designer based in Austin Texas. Currently a manager at Empire BMX, one of the world's largest specialized BMX mailorder companies, Taylor has been involved with the cycling industry over 14 years. He is also an accomplished BMX rider as well as avid motorcycle rider. Through his love of motorcycles he naturally gravitated to tig welding and structural engineering.
For the past 10 years Taylor's art has focused on detailed glass engravings with floral motifs and hand-lettered typography. Applied to decanters, glassware, plate glass and the like, his engraved artwork tends be at small scale, but very detailed. Shifting gears as well as scale in more recent years, Taylor's love of tig welding has challenged him to push his artwork to larger sizes.
Taylor has been riding and volunteering his time at the 9th Street BMX trails for close to two decades. His BMX roots and tenure at 9th Street make him the perfect person to bring this large-scale sculptural art piece to life.
The idea of the 9th sculpture came to Taylor after noticing how
many people take pictures at Daniel Johnston's
"Hi, How Are You?"
mural off the drag/Guadalupe, the recently installed
“ATX” sculpture outside of Whole Foods’ flagship store and especially
statue in downtown Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Robert
Indiana’s LOVE sculpture is well known within the skateboard community,
and Taylor wanted to give this same experience to the BMX community
in Austin and beyond.
The placement and welding of the various metal bike parts within
the rolled metal shapes is meant to symbolize the support of BMX
within Austin’s cycling community. Since the location of the 9th
Street BMX Trails is in between the 800 & 900 block of 9th Street,
the large 9 numeral will stand 9 feet, 8 inches tall as a homage
to its physical location within the city’s grid system.
- Total estimated time to create and install: 12 weeks.
- Project Documentation / Proposal: 75% complete (9/21/2018).
- Project Approval by PARD and APF: pending completion our
documentation/proposal. (2 months)
- Sculpture creation: 10 Weeks (Estimated)
- Sheet Metal bending of the large letters: 7-10 days
steel company Tube-Tec is contracted for the large rolling of
the letterforms with steel plate metal. This process will only
take 7–10 days from start to finish.
- Internal BMX part welding: 30 days
The recycled bicycle
parts will be laid into the outline and welded into place by
Taylor Brown. Each bicycle frame will be placed in a random
layout throughout the sculpture and other parts will fill in
the white spaces around them. The estimated amount of BMX frames
and parts will be around 70 in total.
- Sculpture Base & Concrete foundation: 7 days
on PARD’s installation abilities and resultant timeline, the
concrete foundation is estimated at seven days. The soil excavation,
wood framing, and rebar reinforcement will be overseen by Taylor
- Sculpture Installation: 2 days
Once the concrete is cured,
the sculpture will be installed by a small hoist via anchor rods. These bolts are in exact positions
where the metal bases meet the concrete foundation. There will be a total 16 anchor rods needed to properly mount the sculpture.
- Painting: 3 days
Color-matched exterior green paint using
an air compressor and paint gun will take 1–7 days. (If PARD
requires that the sculpture be painted off-site, the process
will be extended by a week or more.)
Project Materials & Labor:
- Total Estimated Cost $9,500
- Total Labor $2,100
- Total Materials $7,215
- Concrete Foundation $3,000
- Welding $2,400
- Steel Plate Rolling $1,975
- Sculpture Delivery $1,100
- Anchor Rods $930
- Concrete $800
- Welding Materials $570
- Paint Materials $300
- Argon (x 3) $270
- Wood Forms $250
- Skid Steer Dingo $225
- Misc. Welding $200
- Truck & Trailer $140
- Hardware $130
- Reinforced Steel $75
- Auger Head Attachment $66
- Fuel $40
Benefit to Duncan Park:
Giving one of Austin's public parks the recognition it has earned.
This project runs deep with myself and many others in the BMX community.
Many of us or our friends have grown up at 9th and have seen others
grown up at the park. Creating a iconic object that people recognize.
With recognition comes public knowledge of the park and what it
is and means to people who use it or have seen it's location. The
sculpture makes locals respect and have pride for the park. Validating
the public park to many who are uninformed of the rich history that
has taken place at 9th over the years. Having families make plans
to travel to it's location from across town, near by city's, and
other states. Casting the image of park pride, where the locals
maintain this amazing park.