Breckenridge, artist reach agreement on troll sculpture

Children visit “Isak Heartstone,” a 15-foot wooden troll about a mile up the Wellington Trail, on Monday, Aug. 13, 2018, in Breckenridge.
Hugh Carey /

After taking down a wooden troll in November, a reimagined version of the sculpture will be coming to Breckenridge this spring, though exactly where it might go has not been announced.

In a Friday news release, Breckenridge town staff said they have reached a contract with the sculpture’s creator, artist Thomas Dambo, in partnership with Breckenridge Creative Arts, effective Jan. 17.

Additionally, the release adds there will be an open house from 6-7 p.m., March 4, at the Breckenridge Recreation Center, 880 Airport Road, where residents will learn more about the process, location and logistics for the rebuild.

“Staff will be on hand to answer questions regarding trail work, transit, management solutions and public outreach and education,” the release adds.

The open house follows the mid-November de-installation of the troll named “Isak Heartstone,” created as part of a summer arts festival organized by Breckenridge Creative Arts.

The idea was to leave the troll, a reward for venturing out into the woods, in place for as long as the sculpture wasn’t vandalized and withstood the element, which the artist has said would be about three years.

Facing an onslaught of troll traffic on a trail that ran directly behind homes in the Wellington neighborhood, though, residents voiced concerns about the troll before the town’s elected leaders ultimately decided to remove it citing safety concerns following a couple heavy snows this fall.

After removing the troll, a troll task force was formed, including town staff, representatives of Breckenridge Creative Arts and the Breckenridge Tourism Office, and community members.

The group has met regularly since November to work on a potential relocation with possible new locations and potential management strategies in mind. Criteria included walkability, access to transit and community impact, according to the release.

The timeline for the rebuild will be seven to eight workdays in mid-May, but specific dates have not yet been determined.

Taking apart the sculpture, a number of pieces were saved, and the town is describing the new sculpture as “a reimagined version of Dambo’s first Breckenridge sculpture.”

“We are extremely excited to have reached an agreement in this process,” Councilwoman Wendy Wolfe said in the release. “Our committee has been working very hard, and we are confident in the outcome. We are looking forward to giving Isak a new home in Breckenridge.”

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