Repairman-Turned-Artist Crafts an Eye-Catching Dome Using Recycled Bicycle Wheels

Bicycle Tire Dome

In 1994, Vancouver-born bicycle repairman Philippe LeBlond relocated to Yukon, a Canadian territory known for its beautiful scenery. While he made this move to set up shop and enjoy nature, he wound up discovering—and eventually joining—a thriving arts community in the small town of Whitehorse. Merging his mechanical interests with his newfound creativity, LeBlond began crafting sculptures out of old bicycle parts, including a recent dome made out of recycled rims.

This unique work of art is composed of a collection of upcycled bicycle wheels. Ranging in size and style, these wheels have been meticulously bound together with plastic cable-ties, culminating in a durable geodesic structure. Installed in his front yard, this large-scale piece measures over 16 feet in diameter, dwarfing the parked cars, picket fences, and, of course, the intact bicycles that surround it.

What makes this one-of-a-kind sculpture even more special is that is boasts an interactive element. By strategically removing one of the wheels' spokes, LeBlond was able to fashion a “door” to the dome. Inside, lucky visitors will find a protected birch tree—a delightful detail that further illustrates the sustainable side of the artist's eye-catching creations.

This interest in being eco-friendly is also evident in other aspects of LeBlond's life. As an active member of the Whitehorse community, he has introduced a program that lets people borrow bikes for $1. He's also run for office as a Green Party candidate, citing his small business experience as the inspiration.

Philippe LeBlond has found a creative way to recycle old rims. The repairman-turned-artist uses the discarded parts to craft eye-catching sculptures, like this bicycle wheel dome on display in his front yard.

Bicycle Dome

Bike wheel dome

h/t: [Atlas Obscura, What's Up Yukon]

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Kelly Richman-Abdou

Kelly Richman-Abdou is a Contributing Writer at My Modern Met. An art historian living in Paris, Kelly was born and raised in San Francisco and holds a BA in Art History from the University of San Francisco and an MA in Art and Museum Studies from Georgetown University. When she’s not writing, you can find Kelly wandering around Paris, whether she’s leading a tour (as a guide, she has been interviewed by BBC World News America and France 24) or simply taking a stroll with her husband and two tiny daughters.
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