It’s not every day we get to recreate the warriors of ancient China’s first emperor. In fact, Chicago Scenic created six custom warriors for surprise appearances throughout the city.
It was all part of The Field Museum of Natural History’s event as it welcomed nine of Emperor Qin Shihuang’s terracotta warriors into its exhibit, “China’s First Emperor and His Terracotta Warriors”.
To maximize attention to the new exhibit, The Field Museum’s experiential agency, DDB Needham, created a three-week long “Spot A Warrior” campaign that featured six custom warriors that appeared throughout the city.
Chicago Scenic teamed with fiberglass partner Weber Group in Indiana to produce six 5.8-foot tall figures, all with different facial features and uniforms. Each warrior was made with extra attention to durability, since they were exposed to weeks of Chicago’s summer weather conditions.
Once Weber Group completed fabricating the figures, they were shipped to Chicago Scenic where painters used scenic techniques to paint each figure, using small scale models to help them replicate intricate details.
Each warrior was then attached to a custom threefoot square layered steel base, bringing each figure’s weight up to 375 pounds.
In the early morning hours throughout the campaign, Chicago Scenic crews moved the warriors to different locations, ensuring pedestrian and traffic safety and providing commuters with an early morning surprise.
The Field Museum shared clues about the warriors’ changing locations via Twitter, and encouraging followers to visit the exhibit. The figures appeared at nine different public spots—including Daley Plaza, Maggie Daley Park, and Wrigley Field—as well as six hotels, and at Soldier Field for a private event.
Throughout the summer, Chicago Scenic’s Project Director Gary Heitz lent his project management expertise to ensure the project ran smoothly.