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Artist Hebru Brantley Teams Up With Bridgewater Studio to Create “The Great Debate” Sculpture for Battery Park in NYC

Chicago artist Hebru Brantley is known for work that challenges traditional views and inspires change with themes of hope and optimism. His iconic Flyboy character embodies those ideals and has become a pop culture phenomenon, represented in a variety of mediums ranging from oil and canvas to public art installations.

After working with Hebru Brantley on several previous projects—including his Flyboy sculpture at the Graduate Roosevelt Island—we were thrilled to bring another giant sculpture to life.

Hebru Brantley's Flyboy Sculpture: "The Great Debate"

Hebru Brantley’s next piece was to be a 16-foot-tall Flyboy sculpture, titled “The Great Debate,” to be installed at The Battery (formerly “Battery Park”) in New York City. Brantley describes Flyboy as an exploration into what a superhero character of color would look like, with signature aviator goggles serving as a tribute to the pioneering Tuskegee Airmen of WWII. In this piece, Flyboy strikes a confident pose, reminding onlookers to keep their heads high and stand firm in what they believe in, particularly during times of public debate—all qualities that needed to be supported by the use of scale and materials in the sculpture.

Hebru Brantley's Flyboy Sculpture: "The Great Debate" in Battery Park, NYC

Flyboy was designed and fabricated in multiple pieces to allow for ease of transport and on-site assembly. We crafted the armature from steel and enclosed it in polyurea coating, sculpting to shape with advanced CNC equipment. After a test assembly at our Chicago design and fabrication studio, Flyboy was carefully disassembled, packed, shipped, and installed at The Battery in Manhattan.

As always, we owned the entire process to ensure optimal results:

  • 2D + 3D Visualization
  • 3D Mesh + Surface Modelling
  • 3D CAD + Solid Modeling
  • Mesh-to-Solid conversion
  • 3D Structural Simulation
  • CNC and Robotics Programming
  • Maquette Creation
  • Shop Drawing Services
  • Metal Fabrication
  • Painting/Finishing
  • Powder Coating Services
  • CNC + Robot machining
  • Foam Hard Coating
  • Project Estimation + Budgeting
  • Project Management Services
  • Cloud-Based Client Project Portal
  • Nationwide Installation Capabilities
  • Logistics Management Services
  • Location Scouting + Site Survey

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