What Does Miami’s Castrated Bitcoin Bull Mean?
“The Miami Bitcoin Bull” statue, standing 11 feet tall and gleaming in the southern sun, has been described as both “a crime against God” and “quite cool.” The 3,000-pound robotic reworking of the Wall Street icon is constructed of chrome and fiberglass and features blue laser eyes. According to Miami mayor Francis X. Suarez, it reflects the city’s vibrancy, according to Miami Mayor Francis X. Suarez.
Observers noticed the robotic totem with hooves and horns lacked that critical anatomical element almost immediately after being presented outside the Miami Beach Convention Center on Monday, starting the first day of the worldwide Bitcoin 2022 conference. Furio Tedeschi, the bull’s creator, had not planned for the bull to be a steer.
Tedeschi, who has done visual design for the “Transformers” film series, on which his latest piece is based, told Forbes, “I’d designed some big, mechanical balls.” Those assets were reportedly deleted by TradeStation, the Florida-based trading firm that commissioned the robot statue, to avoid fueling gendered prejudices about finance.
“New York is the former financial center… I give you the Miami bull!”
— Bruce Fenton (@brucefenton) April 6, 2022
Suarez, who spoke during the bull’s presentation, aims to transform Miami into a modern banking center, referring to it as the “capital of capital” on several occasions. He’s paid himself in bitcoin, provided tax breaks to crypto, fintech, and investment enterprises, and even named the city’s cryptocurrency, Miami Coin, after himself.
The bull, according to Suarez, “symbolizes the transformation from the old economy to the new economy.” The bull is a powerful symbol of the burgeoning bitcoin business in Miami. But it’s interesting that this “new economy” uses old-fashioned rhetoric and imagery. Is there much that has changed?
When asked about it, Suarez declined to take credit. “And of course, to be honest with you, this is something that TradeStation did. I didn’t do it. It was their concept,” he continued.
(He also backed down from his previous unwavering support for Miami’s Stacks-based “city coin,” stating it’s “too inflationary” to be effective as a currency, although complimenting the demand and “tremendous excitement” surrounding it.) “It’s a fantastic concept, but… you must nail all of the dynamics. That dynamic, I believe, is a little out of whack, “he explained.)
The bull in Miami isn’t the first to take on Wall Street. The “Fearless Girl” sculpture was unveiled on March 7, 2017, the day before International Women’s Day, in front of the famous “Charging Bull” statue, where it stands today. The sculpture, created by feminist sculptor Kristen Visbal and commissioned by asset management firm State Street to promote its gender-diversity index fund, has been lauded as a protest against corporate America’s lack of diversity and slammed as commercialist propaganda.
In truth, Visbal has been in a legal battle with State Street for the right to sell miniatures and recastings of “Fearless Girl” for years. She raised money for her legal defense by selling the stalwart youngster’s non-fungible tokens (NFTs) last year.
Some people who look at the Robo-bull may see a new way forward. Despite its flaws, such as being controlled by the sector it seeks to replace, crypto provides an alternative to traditional finance. Decentralized systems are user-agnostic and accessible to everyone.
Perhaps that was the message TradeStation was trying to send.
“The Miami Bull” is here to stay, whether as a message of protest or something more obnoxious. After the crypto conference, TradeStation President and CEO John Bartleman told CoinDesk TV that the statue would be moved in front of Miami Dade College.