An original Deborah Butterfield horse-inspired, bronze sculpture is on view at the Figge! |
The sculpture, “Half Moon,” now is on view as part of the permanent collection at the Figge Art Museum, 225 W. 2nd St., Davenport.
“For many years we have been working toward the acquisition of a Deborah Butterfield sculpture,” said Michelle Robinson, Ph.D., curator of collections at the Figge. “I was hoping that the Butterfield exhibition would spur interest in the community and it did!”
An anonymous group of donors has provided the funds for the purchase of “Half Moon,” a bronze about 83 inches tall that now is on display in the Orientation Gallery on the first floor of the museum. The sculpture will be on view there until February 2008, when it will be moved elsewhere in the museum to make way for a glass installation.
“Truly, this is a dream come true for the Figge,” Robinson said. “This sculpture is sure to be a popular artwork. We’re very proud that a work by such a prestigious contemporary sculptor now has a permanent home at the Figge.”
“Half Moon,” which is 89 inches tall, is one of Butterfield’s bronze sculptures as opposed to her found metal work. The bronzes start from a full-sized wooden model, which is shipped to her foundry in Walla Walla, Wash. There it is meticulously photographed, disassembled and piece-by-piece cast in bronze, and reassembled with welding. Butterfield then applies a variety of painting techniques to achieve the look of the original wood. “Half Moon” was given its name because of the beautiful curvature of the neck.
“Deborah Butterfield,” an exhibition of 16 cast bronze, “found metal” and mixed media sculptures, was on view from March 3-May 27, 2007, at the Figge.
Butterfield transforms found metal into objects of majestic beauty and poignancy. Her wood-into-cast bronze horses, likewise, are objects of great technical mastery and insight into one of America’s great icons, the horse. She has been sculpting for more than 30 years. Horses have been the single, sustained focus of Butterfield’s work for more than 20 years.
Deborah Butterfield is an outstanding artist and teacher of fine arts with a solid career and many honors to her credit. She received her bachelor of arts from the University of California at Davis, California, in 1972, followed by her master of fine arts there in 1973.
Her honors and awards are numerous, and include a National Endowment for the Arts Individual Artist Fellowship in 1977, a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship in 1980, a National Endowment for the Arts Individual Artist Fellowship, a Citation for Excellence Award from the UC Davis and Cal Aggie Alumni Association in 1992, and an American Academy of Achievement - Golden Plate Award in 1993.
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