After months of discussion and a few weeks of work, Pease Park is rolling out its troll.

Thomas Dambo Troll installation, which has been the subject of both anticipation and argument, is scheduled to be unveiled today. The Pease Park Conservancy commissioned the piece by Danish artist Dambo (they're kind of his thing) last year, altering the plan a bit after round of community engagement and a city review last fall.

Dambo started the build in late February, using recycled wood sourced from Harvest Lumber, a sustainable sawmill that repurposes Austin’s fallen trees. The wood-reclamation company milled much of the material for the troll from a water tower formerly at the J.J. Pickle Research Campus of the University of Texas at Austin. 

The project drew no small amount of controversy, on the grounds of trendiness, the fact that the parts of the 15' x 18' sculpture were made in Denmark, allegations that the sculptor's claim to use salvaged wood was exaggerated, and that troll mythology has little or no connection to local culture or history (unless you count internet trolling, in which case we're golden).

"This is a fashionable trend in public art installations that has no local relevance," wrote one Facebook commenter, while another countered, "Art is universal, would have been super cool if someone local had something like this but maybe having an art piece that celebrates nature (yes, with trash) will give other artists, possibly local, an opportunity?"

The Pease Park troll also drew a rival and possible crush in a nearby neighborhood.

For its part, the conservancy explains the troll sourcing in detail on its website:

More than 80% of our new Austin troll is being made from recycled, repurposed, or found materials. Here are some specifics.

For safety and longevity, untreated dimensional lumber is used for the core internal structure. For the Pease Park troll, approximately 1,800 linear feet of Eastern Red Cedar has been used for this core. This cedar is from the local, family-owned Wampler sawmill in Bastrop County which the Wampler family has operated for 61 years.

The exterior cladding of the troll is repurposed wood from the old water tower at the J.J. Pickle Research Campus of UT Austin. It consists of approximately 7,500 linear feet of wood.

The troll’s feet were created in Denmark from repurposed materials. The hair for the troll will be from Ashe juniper roots collected by a local supporter and Ashe juniper from ice-storm felled trees on the Kingsbury Hillside.

The artwork was funded by the conservancy, which manages the operations and maintenance of Pease District Park, and San Antonio-based Tejemos Foundation, which is paying the costs of installation and maintenance of the troll for the duration of the 15-year exclusive license Dambo granted Pease Park.