The Spirit of McLaren Figurative Wire Sculpture That Embodies Speed

An artist’s ability to meet the shifting demands of each unique piece is integral to making memorable art in public places. The goal is to present a message that suits each site-specific location or particular client, while not sacrificing personal artistic style. Derek Kinzett’s figurative wire sculpture The Spirit of McLaren shows how even big-name companies can greatly benefit from art.

Figurative Wire Sculpture Derek Kinzett McLaren
This figurative wire sculpture was made following the artist’s special method, but with a slightly different subject.

Famous for his wire mesh fairies, Kinzett’s work always possesses mystical qualities. There is a certain magic to the way that one sees through his unique sculptures, while at the same time perceiving their sharply realistic outlines. This commission from The International Motor Show in Geneva, Switzerland for McLaren Automotive is no exception. Famous for creating some of the fastest supercars available, McLaren wanted the wire sculpture to symbolize the ideals of the company.

“The sculpture brief was to create a muscular, athletic figurative sculpture in a sprinting stance, projecting speed, agility and power.”

To meet these specific challenges, Derek Kinzett visually analyzed the extraordinary speed of famed Olympian Usain Bolt. What is the angle of a torso to the ground in a full sprint? What do the tips of the fingers do when a runner is exerting all of his energy? These specific considerations are what led to the artwork’s amazing sensation of true speed and never-before-seen style. Enchanting both patrons and press at the motor show, Kinzett’s The Spirit of McLaren makes viewers do a double take.

The figurative sculpture is made from galvanized wire mesh and then sprayed with a zinc coating so it can withstand the tests of time. By its nature, the material is perfect for rendering the contours of the body. The many quadrants that make up the pattern of the wire create texture in the piece, showing off the curves of the muscles.

Figurative Wire Sculpture Derek Kinzett McLaren
One can sense the speed of the runner because each small part of the body is in action.

It was suspended in mid-air behind the McLaren 720S, bringing a bit of an ephemeral touch to the showroom, derived from the aesthetic of the work and also what it stands for. A piece with an emotional charge like this one can provide an interesting layer to a sterile and mechanized environment.

Derek Kinzett never wears protective gloves when creating his wire sculptures, as he wants to have as much contact with the materials as possible. This detail orientated work requires a tactile sensitivity to the small differences in shape that separate a great sculpture from an extraordinary one. There is no doubt that Kinzett has this special skill.