The Growing Robot Culture: China Builds Giant Optimus Prime Out of Junk (video)
As if you needed convincing that the world loves robots, China's given us 6 tons of more evidence. That's the weight of the colossal 38 foot tall (11.5 m) statue of Optimus Prime that was recently constucted outside the Olympic 'Bird's Nest' Stadium in Beijing. Created as part of the 'Green Dream Park', the giant robot is made from recycled materials: the carcasses of old cars. It, along with other artwork on display in the park, is designed to promote China's commitment to environmentalism and a 'green lifestyle'. Probably a fail on that count, but it does convince me of China's love for the 'robot lifestyle'. Check out Prime's mighty likeness in the news clip from CNTV below.
Strangely enough, this isn't China's only giant robot statue of a Transformer made out of recycled cars. Student artist Bi Heng constructed Kwansformer, a 30 foot (9 m) bot made from an old Jiefang CA10 truck. For those lacking an 'A' in Chinese history, it's one of the first autos the nation ever built. Kwansformer is also in the shape of a famous general (Guan Yu) and is carrying an enormous 'green dragon crescent blade' (see the photo below). This robot statue promoted Chinese success through out history and in modern times.
Apparently when China has something to celebrate the trendy thing to do is build a giant Transformer. ...That's awesome. Not only are they cool to look at, they hint at the growing importance robot's have in that society (and the global culture as a whole). These bots are symbols of wealth, success, and promise. I bet that makes the robot's feel good about themselves.
Speaking of feeling good about yourself, we need to build more of these in the States. There's a giant robot statue gap! All we've got is Bumblebee.