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Portrait of a Dreamer.


Field review by the editors.

Lansing, Michigan

This artwork is officially titled, "Portrait of a Dreamer," although it screams to be nicknamed Gearhead. The nickname would also fit its sculptor, Ivan Iler, who designs and builds custom motorcycles when he's not making art.

Unveiled on December 11, 2017, the giant mechanical head is 15 feet high and is built out of almost two tons of aluminum and stainless steel. Visitors are encouraged to turn a crank at its base to move the gears, which spill out of the head toward Lansing's cultural district. The purpose of the sculpture is to turn visitors' heads while they turn the crank, so that they notice the science center and museums that they otherwise might miss along Michigan Ave.

Ivan told us that the artwork is his interpretation of the process behind thoughts and dreams, and that the idea came to him while he was struggling to conjure a design. "I started to think of something mechanical, but I wasn't sure what," he told us. "Then I thought, 'I just need to get my gears turning' -- and it hit me. 'That's it! I'll create that.'"


336 E. Michigan Ave., Lansing, MI
Downtown, just east of the river, on the south side of E. Michigan Ave. at its intersection with Museum Drive.
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
Save to My Sights

Nearby Offbeat Places

Bottle Rocket SculptureBottle Rocket Sculpture, Lansing, MI - < 1 mi.
Inspirational Road SignsInspirational Road Signs, Lansing, MI - < 1 mi.
R.E. Olds Transportation MuseumR.E. Olds Transportation Museum, Lansing, MI - < 1 mi.
In the region:
Flying Saucer and Bigfoot, Shaftsburg, MI - 11 mi.

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