Bicycle Diaries: No more car kabob?

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No more car kabob?

a cherished landmark threatened

The car kabob; perhaps the best known anti-cager monument amongst us here in Chicago's bike communities, is coming down in west suburban Berwyn. The decision has prompted us as well as other kitsch fans to moan No way! Way, says the Berwyn's mayor, Michael O'Connor.

The Associated Press, 10 July 07: Suburban Chicago's "car kabob" will soon be no more.
The kitschy landmark that once made a cameo in the 1992 movie "Wayne's World" will be dismantled to make way for a pharmacy. Officially named "Spindle," the towering sculpture features eight cars impaled on a massive steel pipe. Despite years of rust and layers of bird droppings, it continues to draw movie fans to Berwyn.

Mayor Michael O'Connor said the quirky sculpture will be removed this summer to make way for a Walgreens. O'Connor adds that he's enjoyed the attention Berwyn has gotten because of the sculpture, which is also known as the "Eight Car Pile-up."

California artist Dustin Shuler built the piece in 1989 and called the dismantling "painful."

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Blogger Jamie said...

It's amazing how many locally beloved structures are pulled down in the name of Walgreen's. Here in Columbus, the Kahiki Polynesian Supper Club, which was on the National Register of Historic Buildings, was pulled down for a Walgreen's. Now here's another example. Walgreen's has no shame.

11/7/07 10:59  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I called the city of Berwyn to find out what the time frame was and whether there was still potential to have the structure relocated
(Divison/Ashland/Milwaukee?) and was kindly given permission to "come in and file a freedom of information act".

I tried Walgreens and was transferred to real estate, and was given Zack
Church's number- 847/315-4928. Probably not the line to burn up if you want Walgreen's to take notice of possible negative publicity.

I've been unable to find contact info for the artist, so I asked an artist friend to explore her secret artist channels, and her inquiry has generated unexpected interest and inquiries about the spire.

A quick google search will show that this work is of much greater
national and international significance than us "locals" might assume. I don't care about Wayne's World or Berwyn or what the spire was
originally supposed to represent; it's actually the idea that a reknowned piece of public art can so easily be bought and "torn down" that disgusts me. . . .

OK, in the process of typing this I received a call back from a Michael O'Connor . . . I asked him which department he was with and he said "I'm the mayor of Berwyn" (d'oh!)

He says they haven't given up on the spire, and are aware of the
importance of it-- they're exploring moving it further west in the same
lot. I explained it was significant to me since I was part of a culture
that hopes cars go away someday soon, and his response was very positive
and affirming. He said he'll keep my number in case they need help with
options :-)

11/7/07 12:47  
Anonymous jessica said...

you were in the sun times today for this post!

16/7/07 16:54  

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