My latest project was “Old Glory” – a 10 x 16 feet American flag created from nailing over 20,000 individually punched and crimped Budweiser bottle caps to plywood. It’s the largest bottle cap art I’ve managed so far. It made its debut at the Stagecoach Music Festival in Indio, California.
What I loved about the project, was how iconic it was – you can’t get more American than Bud caps. Bottle caps have long had a place in the folk art tradition as a decorative element. I love that the artwork traveled from coast-to-coast. Whatever your idea of America is, I think this piece speaks to that. This goes beyond “Made In America”, it’s a sculpture “Made of Americana”.
It’s also amazing how bottle cap mosaics interact with the light. When you look at one or two caps from any brand, they’re generally not all that impressive. But when you group hundreds or thousands of them together and let them catch the sunlight, they truly glow. The combination of the background color with the logo can create vibrant color tones that are lively and wholly unexpected.
The scale of the piece was so large, it was a perfect opportunity to show how I made the bottle cap flag. I worked with filmmaker Stephen Blauweiss to achieve a short, five-minute, behind-the-scenes film, which will air shortly on PBS.
More info: johntunger.com
Me And Old Glory
Making Of Old Glory
Close Up Of Bottle Cap Flag
Assembling Old Glory
Finishing Old Glory
Close Up Of Flag
Old Glory Budwesier Bottle Cap Mosaic Flag
Old Glory At Stagecoach Festival
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