HomeNewsPHOTO: Why a 22-Foot Tall Larger-Than-Life Spaceman Sculpture Has Landed in the Caribbean

PHOTO: Why a 22-Foot Tall Larger-Than-Life Spaceman Sculpture Has Landed in the Caribbean

by Jonathan Howard
(Photo by Alexis Rosenfeld/Getty Images)

If you are planning to head down to Antigua anytime soon you may just see a giant spaceman. Artist Brendan Murphy, 50, has recently placed one of his newest sculptures down in Hodges Bay Resort in Antigua. The sculpture stands 22-feet tall and weighs 3,000 pounds. The name of the piece? “The Boonji Spaceman.”

The giant metal art piece is made up of steel and carbon fiber. Words and mathematical equations decorate the shiny bronze-colored exterior in a white, handwritten font. The figure is striking a Michael Jackson-inspired stance as if it is jumping out to begin a dance routine. The piece has been sitting on a dock in Hodges Bay Resort since March of this year.

Murphy claims that the sculpture represents a willingness to take on anything. The sculptor explained his love and connection as an artist with those who travel into space, taking on unknown challenges few have before. “Who better to embody embracing the unknown than a guy jumping out of a spaceship into space?” Murphy said in an interview with CNN.

“The Boonji Spaceman” has made quite the name for itself in its Caribbean home. The hotel owner, Christopher Harding commissioned the piece and has said it has become a bit of a tourist attraction in the months since. The giant spaceman is based on an 18-inch version that Murphy originally made out of bronze. When asked to complete this larger version, he knew it was going to have to be really big.

The Making of ‘The Boonji Spaceman’

Brenden Murphy’s creation didn’t just come out of nowhere. As mentioned previously, Murphy has a connection with the idea of space travel and those who do it. Throughout his career, the “The Boonji Spaceman” artist has sold works to Serena Williams, Robert DeNiro, Warren Buffett, and more. The first spaceman he made was six years ago in 2015.

As a young child growing up, Murphy remembers watching the space shuttles take off in school. “I have very distinct memories of watching the space shuttle. When I was in grade school we would stop class and bring the TVs in and I remember thinking, ‘What is that?'” That interest only grew as Murphy grew older and he started to incorporate it into his creativity.

For Murphy, a former Wall Street suit, the bronze statue is right where it needs to be. After putting the whole thing together, having to paint, chrome, reassemble, take it apart, ship it to Antigua, and put it back together…it should feel right at home. The piece is set in 6-feet of concrete in the water. The inside contains a carbon fiber skeleton that will ideally be able to withstand hurricane season when the time comes.

Murphy says he wrote “A lot about dreams, imagination,” around the sculpture to represent that nothing is set in stone. “The future has not yet been written,” says the Massachusetts native.