The driver’s goal: to perform well, hold together mind, body, and machine and cross the finish in a flurry of checkered black and white. In an eloquent study of form and motion the bronze flagman reaches far out of the elevated signal tower to hail the winner with a cascade of polished bronze and stainless-steel checkers.
“The sculpture Final Flag Unfurled was inspired by a composite of many similar scenes. It is the third bronze and stainless steel design that I have done based on the flag bearer waving the checkered flag to mark the winner of a race. Of all the images in auto racing, I think that the checkered flag is the most universally recognized as symbolic of the ultimate goal in racing; to finish and preferably to finish first. The challenge that I tackle in the sculpture is to create a feeling of excitement and motion in the static materials of bronze and stainless. By pulling the square pattern of the flag out into curved arcs of varying length I tried to give the impression of movement. Polishing the stainless steel arcs so that they reflect light enhances the sense of motion. As the viewer moves around the piece the reflections move and change. Also, making the black squares of the checkered pattern actual cut-outs, I hope to create an illusion of the ephemeral motion of the waving flag.” - Larry Braun