Fabricators' firefighting sculpture wins Queen Theater contest

firefighter sculpture

"Come Hell or High Water" sculpture won a contest at the Queen Theater during Nov. 1 [First Friday] (http://downtownbryan.com/firstfriday/) festivities in downtown Bryan.

“Come Hell or High Water,” an intricate metal sculpture of a fireman bursting through a wall of flames and water, created by a team from the Texas A&M College of Architecture’s [Automated Fabrication and Design Lab] (http://www.arch.tamu.edu/inside/services/digital-fabrication/) , won the People's Choice Award from among 20 metal sculptures exhibited Friday, Nov. 1 at the [Queen Theater] (http://downtownbryan.com/blog/queen/) in downtown Bryan as part of the MonuMetal Sculpting Contest, a fundraising competition benefiting the historic building.

Entries in the contest, sponsored by the [Downtown Bryan Association] (http://downtownbryan.com/) , were exhibited during downtown Bryan’s [First Friday] (http://downtownbryan.com/firstfriday/) festivities.

The top entries are being auctioned on the [Facebook page] (https://www.facebook.com/DowntownBryan) for Historic Downtown Bryan, Texas until 5 p.m. Dec. 18. Bids are also being accepted at the Downtown Bryan Association office at 979.822.4920 or via e-mail at beth@downtownbryan.com.

The firefighter sculpture showcases many of the AFDL’s different capabilities from computer-controlled CNC routing to manual processes, including welding and forming, said Christopher Paulk, the lab’s manager.

Paulk and four student workers have been working on the sculpture at the lab, located at Texas A&M’s Riverside Campus, since getting 500 pounds of scrap metal earlier this month from Bryan Iron & Metal to begin the project; each team had just 3 hours to gather what they needed for their respective sculpture.

It’s also been a learning experience for the lab’s student workers: Nesrine Mansour, a [Master of Architecture] (http://dept.arch.tamu.edu/graduate/master-architecture/) student, and undergraduates Stephen Renard and Troy Hassman, [environmental design] (http://dept.arch.tamu.edu/undergraduate/) students and David Gardner, a [construction science] (http://cosc.arch.tamu.edu/undergraduate/) student.

“None of them had done any kind of metalwork before,” said Paulk. “They’re learning welding, plasma cutting, forming and banding and how to use CNC automations,” he said.

Paulk said that 20 percent of the piece’s auction proceeds will be returned to the lab, which will be used to buy new equipment.

posted October 31, 2013