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Chrome Bumper Sculptures

Have you seen the life-sized horse made of shiny chrome bumpers in downtown Wichita? How about the steer?

Artist John Kearney, who used large-scale metal sculptures to depict life-size pieces, welded chrome together to create his futuristic pieces. Inspired by a pile of auto bumpers sourced from a garbage dump, he sculpted many of his creations to resemble animals. While many of his pieces are owned by private collectors, Wichitans and visitors are fortunate to be able to view many of his sculptures in various locations around the city.

One of the chrome-plated sculptures in the shape of a bull, originally part of a pair called “Two Steers,” is on display in Delano Park at McLean Boulevard and the Douglas Street Bridge near the Historic Delano District. It serves as a tribute to the historical cattle drives along the Chisholm Trail. The other steer can be found in front of Maize High School.

Keeping the Kearney’s sculptures in pristine, shiny condition is an ongoing process. “Grandfather’s Horse,” located near Hubbard Hall on the Wichita State University campus, recently underwent restoration and is part of the Martin H. Bush Outdoor Sculpture Collection

Wichita Highlights