During the first day of the Bitcoin 2022 conference in Miami, mayor and extreme crypto enthusiast Francis Suarez unveiled an 11-foot, 3,000-pound statue of a bull inspired by the iconic Wall Street statue but with Bitcoin laser eyes and other “ultramodern robotic” features.
Suarez said in a statement that the statue was a “symbolic and powerful addition” to the city that helped prove that the “future of finance is here, in Miami.”
The bull was unveiled Wednesday at the Miami Beach Convention Center, which will be home to the Bitcoin 2022 conference over the next four days. Speakers include noted meat lover and recent Bitcoin convert Jordan Peterson, Gawker-killer Peter Thiel, opinion-haver Aaron Rodgers, and El Salvador President Nayib Bukele, who is betting his country’s financial health on the power of Bitcoin.
It took 30 people and more than half a year to finish the robotic crypto bull, which was designed by artist Furio Tedeschi—who developed the concept art for the Transformers movie series—and constructed by an entertainment studio that has helped with films like Batman vs. Superman, Gremlins 2, and one of the Bill & Ted flicks.
Suarez has become a full-on evangelist for blockchain technology as he attempts to lure businesses and people to the low-tax state and turn his city into the world center of blockchain technology. He has converted a paycheck to Bitcoin, launched a MiamiCoin token that has resulted in millions of dollars in revenue, and wants residents to be able to pay taxes using crypto. (Suarez isn't alone—Governor Ron DeSantis agrees.)
The statue was commissioned by TradeStation, a crypto-friendly trading platform headquartered in Plantation, Florida. The company’s CEO, John Bartleman, told Motherboard that it’s been exciting watching Miami transform into the self-appointed crypto capital of the world. The giant bull with laser eyes, he said, will serve as an inspiration to the local population.
“The one thing we saw is that we're really missing a symbol, something that the community here can really rally around,” Bartleman said.
There were a number of ideas thrown around, but Bartleman said the robotic bull with laser eyes and a “very crypto vibe” was the “clear winner” when he first heard about it.
“This is something we knew would really resonate around the world,” Bartleman said. “We really want this to become the most famous, iconic statue in the world.”
Luca Pannese, who works for the advertising agency behind the bull, told Motherboard it was “so emotional” watching as the robotic crypto bull was unveiled Wednesday morning. He said the crowd seemed to like it as well.
“It was like a moment of ‘Whoa,’ rather than clapping,” he said.
The bull will eventually reside at Miami Dade College, where it will exist as a monument to crypto.