Artist Leon Reid IV Proposes Hanging 60-Foot Spider in Brooklyn Bridge’s Suspension Wires

10/18/2011 4:19 PM |

Just in time for Halloween!
  • Just in time for Halloween! (Courtesy Leon Reid IV)

After prevailing against the Parks Department in his Battle for the George Washington Statue at the beginning at the month, Brooklyn-based sculptor and street artist Leon Reid IV has set his sights on a much bigger and more highly visible monument: the Brooklyn Bridge. Specifically, for the installation “A Spider Lurks in Brooklyn,” he hopes to install a giant sculpture of a spider in the suspension wires of the historic span.

More Claes Oldenburg than Louise Bourgeois, the massive funnel web-spinning arachnid would hang from the Brooklyn Bridge’s cables come October 2014. In his proposal for the installation, Reid explains that though heavy in appearance (he expects it to be 60 feet long, 30 feet wide and 13 feet high), the spider would be made of helium-filled vinyl, so actually quite light, relatively inexpensive and in no way posing a risk to the bridge’s structural integrity.

(Courtesy Leon Reid IV)
  • (Courtesy Leon Reid IV)

To be installed from October 15th to November 1st, 2014—perfect for giving interborough trick-or-treaters nightmares—Reid estimates the privately-funded project will cost $823,272.

Explaining the project’s origins to Gothamist, Reid recalls:

One day in 2008, I was walking on the bridge from Brooklyn into Manhattan with my wife Caroline. Somewhere on the stretch leading up to the Brooklyn-side arches, it hit me; what if a spider crawled through the cables? Could a spider have designed the cable structure? Is this what it feels like to be trapped in a spider web? The idea was compelling enough for me to pursue. The spider could not work—visually—on any bridge other than the Brooklyn Bridge.

We hope this project doesn’t become trapped in a web of Landmarks Preservation Commission red tape.