Herd About the Prairie: A Visual Art Stampede


Uploaded by PrairiePublicBcast on 24.01.2011

Transcript:

[applause]
(woman) THE NAME OF THE PROJECT IS
"HERD ABOUT THE PRAIRIE: A VIRTUAL ART STAMPEDE."
[orchestra plays in bright rhythm & tone]
PEOPLE LOVE IT!

WHEN YOU HEAR THE ARTISTS TALK ABOUT THEIR WORK,
YOU REALIZE HOW MUCH OF THEIR HEART IS
IN EACH AND EVERY INCH OF THAT STATUE.


FUNDING FOR "HERD ABOUT THE PRAIRIE:
A VIRTUAL ART STAMPEDE," WAS PROVIDED BY
THE LAKE AGASSIZ ARTS COUNCIL
AND BY THE MEMBERS OF PRAIRIE PUBLIC.

(Martha Keeler Olsen) THE THING ABOUT THESE BISON ARE THEY ARE SO ACCESSIBLE.
SEE HIS NOSE? WHERE'S HIS NOSE?

IT CERTAINLY IS ONE THAT'S BELOVED BY PEOPLE.
FARGO-MOORHEAD HAS BEEN, I THINK,
ATTEMPTING TO DO PUBLIC ART
IN SOME FASHION FOR YEARS,
AND IT'S NOT SEEMED TO HAVE BEEN EMBRACED BY THE PUBLIC.
AND SO IT'S KIND OF A STEPPING STONE TO ACQUAINT THE PUBLIC
WITH THE IDEA OF PUBLIC ART, THAT THERE CAN BE
BEAUTIFUL THINGS AROUND OUR COMMUNITY THAT ACTUALLY
ENHANCES THE ESTHETICS OF THE PLACE WE LIVE.

(Geri Burkhart Weiner) MY BISON HAS A THEME
OF GO-- G-O-G-H-BISON-GO.
I CAME UP WITH THAT THINKING ABOUT THE BISON SYMBOL
THAT THEY USE AT NDSU AND THE LANDSCAPE OF OUR STATE.
I ACTUALLY DIDN'T THINK OF VAN GOGH UNTIL LATER ON
AFTER I TRIED TO FIGURE OUT EXACTLY WHAT MY LANDSCAPE
WOULD LIKE AND STARTED TO THINK OF DIFFERENT ARTISTS,
AND THEN I CAME UP WITH THE PUN, "GOGH-BISON-GO."
I CAME UP WITH THE IDEA OF DOING A NIGHTTIME LANDSCAPE
WHICH I USED "STARRY NIGHT,"
AND THE OTHER SIDE IS THE DAYTIME,
AND I USED THE LEGS MOSTLY FOR TREES.
ON ONE SIDE, IT'S THE CYPRESS TREES THAT HE'S SO FAMOUS FOR,
AND THE OTHER SIDE I USED THE OLIVE TREES.
THE MOST CHALLENGING THING WAS TO USE ACRYLIC PAINT
BECAUSE I'M AN OIL PAINTER,
AND, OF COURSE, VAN GOGH WAS AN OIL PAINTER.
SO THE APPLICATION OF BRUSHSTROKES
WAS A LITTLE BIT DIFFERENT.
HIS PAINT BRUSH ALWAYS LEFT
LITTLE TROUGHS OF PAINT ON EACH SIDE.
I EXPERIMENTED WITH DIFFERENT KINDS OF MEDIUMS
TO BUILD UP THE PAINT
AND TO MAKE IT LOOK LIKE VAN GOGH'S BRUSHSTROKES.
I WANT TO BRING OUT THESE,
YOU KNOW, THESE LITTLE CREASES AND STUFF AND THE BAND-AIDS
TO MAKE 'EM LOOK LIKE THERE'S MORE DEPTH TO 'EM.
HE CUT OFF HIS EAR FOR A WOMAN.
I WANTED TO SHOW THAT TOO,
AND I MADE A FIBERGLASS BAND-AID AND APPLIED IT OVER HIS EAR.

THE BISON CAME WITH A BRAND,
SO I DECIDED TO USE THE IDEA
OF WHAT ALL RENAISSANCE PAINTERS DID--
THEY PAINTED THEMSELVES INTO THEIR PAINTINGS,
SO I PAINTED MYSELF WITH HORNS ONTO THE THIGH OF THE BISON.

(Martha Keeler Olsen) THE NAME OF THE PROJECT IS
"HERD ABOUT THE PRAIRIE: A VIRTUAL ART STAMPEDE."
PROJECTS LIKE THIS HAVE BEEN DONE ELSEWHERE.
THE MOST FAMOUS ONE, OF COURSE, IS THE COWS IN CHICAGO.
THAT'S WHERE IT ALL STARTED IN AMERICA.
LOCALLY, THERE IS A PROJECT WITH HORSES IN BISMARCK.
THEY DID BEARS IN WINNIPEG,
AND DETROIT LAKES DID SUNFISH.

PEOPLE LOVE IT!
THEY LOVE TO HAVE SOMETHING BEAUTIFUL TO LOOK AT,
SOMETHING THAT MAKES THEM SMILE, SOMETHING THAT MAKES THEM THINK.
AND THESE BISON HAVE, ONE WAY OR ANOTHER,
ALL OF THOSE ELEMENTS.
THEY HAVE VERY MOVING CONCEPTS TO THEM.
SOME OF THEM ARE STRICTLY DECORATIVE.
OTHERS ARE VERY DEEP.
SOME OF THEM ARE VERY WHIMSICAL.
[brass band plays]

(Rhonda Ness) THE ONLY HER IN THE WHOLE HERD.
I'M MAKING HER A FEMALE PILOT WITH AN ATTITUDE...
MS. B., FLYING DIVA.
SHE'S A BUFFALO, OR BISON,
AND MS.-- THAT'S AN ATTITUDE-- SO SHE'S GOT BOTH.
JUST PUTTING HER AS A PILOT WOULD BE A LITTLE BORING.
I MEAN, SHE'S HAD THE BOMBER'S JACKET AND HAVE THIS FACE,
AND IT JUST WOULDN'T HAVE ANY PIZZAZZ.
I'VE BEEN A PILOT FOR 7 YEARS
AND WANTED TO BE A PILOT SINCE I WAS 20.
WHEN I FIRST SAW 'EM, I WANTED TO DO HER INTO A PILOT.
THAT WAS THE ONLY IDEA I EVER HAD FOR HER.
IT JUST KINDA SEEMED LIKE IT SHOULD BE, AND THEN IT EVOLVED.
SHE KEEPS TELLING ME WHAT TO DO, AND SO I LISTEN TO HER.
THE WINGS ARE MADE OUT OF FIBERGLASS.
THE COLLAR STARTED OUT TO BE JUST A LEATHER COLLAR,
AND THEN I WAS GOING TO HAVE TO DO MORE FIBER GLASSING SO
I THOUGHT OH, I'LL DO IT EASY
AND DO A SHEEPSKIN COLLAR-- NOT EASY!
THE LITTLE PEANUTS MAKE A PERFECT BASE FOR THAT COLLAR.
I THINK I'VE GOT THOUSANDS OF 'EM IN THERE!
I'VE USED FIBERGLASS, I'VE USED BONDO.
I'VE USED JEWELS BEADS, ANYTHING THAT COMES IN HANDY.
THOSE ARE STAMPS WHERE SHE'S BEEN, TOKYO AND PERU AND FARGO.
THERE'S A RAISED COW SKULL ON HER BACK LEG,
AND I THOUGHT OH, I CAN PAINT THAT DALLAS--IT'S PERFECT!
I MEAN THE OLD SHOW, "DALLAS," ALL THE GLITZ AND GOLD.
A LOT OF PEOPLE HAVE ENJOYED HER AND WATCHING THE PROGRESS,
AND I'VE ENJOYED HER.
I'VE BONDED WITH MY BUFFALO!


(Martha Keeler Olsen) WE KICKED OFF THE PROJECT
BY BRINGING INVITED GUESTS
AND COMMUNITY PEOPLE, POTENTIAL SPONSORS,
AND THOSE WHO HAD ALREADY SPONSORED OVER TO THE HJEMKOMST
TO WITNESS THE UNVEILING OF THE VERY FIRST BISON.
[applause]
WE COMMISSIONED HANS GILSDORF WHO CREATED "BEACH BUFF."
[drums play a surfin' beat]
(Hans Gilsdorf) MY THEME FOR THIS BUFFALO IS BEACH BUFF,
SO HE'S ON HIS WAY DOWN TO THE WATERS.
HE'S GOT EVERYTHING ON HIM-- THE SWIM TRUNKS,
THE RUBBER DUCKIE INNER TUBE,
THE WATER WINGS, THE BEACH TOWEL, GOGGLES, AND FLIPPERS.
I'M FROM THE LAKES AREA SO IT'S REPRESENTATIVE
OF THE LAKES AREA. TO ME IT'S A LOT OF FUN
TO LISTEN TO KIDS AND DO THINGS THAT MAKE KIDS SMILE,
WHICH IN TURN MAKES ADULTS SMILE.
I CAME OUT HERE WITH MY SISTER AND MY DAUGHTER AND MY NEPHEW,
AND WHEN WE LOOKED AT IT, MY NEPHEW SAID WELL,
THAT LOOKS LIKE MAYBE IT HAS A SWIMSUIT,
AND THE LITTLE PANTALOONS WHICH ARE ON THE FRONT
AND TUFTS OF FUR ON THE BUFFALO LOOK LIKE WATER WINGS.
IT JUST ESCALATED, AND I THINK I LISTENED TOO MUCH
TO HIM BECAUSE WE ADDED A LOT OF STUFF ON IT.

THE INNER TUBE IS MADE
OUT OF AN ALUMINUM FLEX DUCT AND FIBERGLASS THAT,
AND YOU TEXTURE IT AND BONDO OVER THE TOP OF IT.
THE BEACH TOWELS ARE ACTUALLY REAL TOWELS.
THEY'RE SOAKED IN RESIN, DRAPED OVER.
AND THE SHORTS ARE A COMBINATION
OF SCULPTED AND ACTUAL 4-X SWIM TRUNKS.
AND THEN THE WATER WINGS ARE A MIXTURE OF DIFFERENT FOAMS
AND THEN FIBERGLASS AND SCULPTING EPOXY.
THE BAD COMB-OVER IS--WHEN I MENTIONED THAT, MY DAD JUST DIED
LAUGHIN' AT IT, AND SO THAT'S WHERE WE GOT THE BAD COMB OVER.
I'VE DONE A LOT OF FULL SIZE DINOSAURS, HUMPBACK WHALES,
AND DIFFERENT ASPECTS OF EXHIBITS FOR MUSEUMS SO
ACTUALLY 3-DIMENSIONAL AND PAINTING ARE MY SPECIALITIES.
BEING LIKE THE LEAD BUFFALO FOR THE PUBLIC, I WANTED TO DO
A PIECE TO SHOW YOU CAN ADD TO IT, CUT IT UP,
MANIPULATE IT, AND CHANGE THE WHOLE LOOK OF IT.
VERSUS JUST TAKING THE MAIN FORM AND PAINTING IT.


(Martha Keeler Olsen) THE ORIGINAL BISON STATUE
WAS CREATED BY JOE HALKO, A MONTANA ARTIST.
THE DIMENSIONS ARE 8 FEET LONG, 5 FEET HIGH, AND 3 FEET WIDE.
THEY WEIGH 100 TO 110 POUNDS.
THE FIBER GLASS WAS MANUFACTURED BY FIBERSTOCK
IN, BELIEVE IT OR NOT, BUFFALO, MINNESOTA.
WHEN WE GOT THEM OFF THE TRUCK, THE FIRST TIME I SAW IN PERSON,
IT JUST TOOK MY BREATH AWAY.
EVEN WITHOUT ANY ARTIST WORK ON IT,
IT WAS A WORK OF ART IN AND OF ITSELF.

WE STARTED DELIVERING BISON TO THE ARTISTS IN NOVEMBER.
THAT PROCESS WENT ON THROUGH JANUARY.
WE WANTED TO HAVE THE ARTISTS HAVE
AT LEAST 90 DAYS TO WORK ON THE PIECE.
HE'S JUST BULKY. S NOT TERRIBLY HEAV.
THEN THEY WERE COLLECTED AND WAREHOUSED FOR A TIME.
THEN THEY WERE CLEAR-COATED
SO THAT THEY ARE DURABLE OUT-OF-DOORS.
IT'S TO PROTECT THE COLORS FROM THE SUNLIGHT.
IT'S TO PROTECT 'EM FROM THE WEATHER.
(man) RUNNERS ON YOUR MARK,
GET SET! GO!
[applause & cheers]
THEY WERE PRESENTED TO THE PUBLIC
IN COLLABORATION WITH THE FARGO MARATHON.
SOME OF THE SITES FOR THE SUMMER ACTUALLY
WERE ALONG THE MARATHON ROUTE, SO WE WERE TAKING ADVANTAGE
OF THIS BIG PUBLIC EVENT TO PRESENT OUR BISON TO THE PUBLIC.
THE TIMING WAS BEAUTIFUL
BECAUSE THE BUZZ GOT STARTED ABOUT THESE BISON.
PEOPLE STARTED LOOKIN' FOR THEM.
THE PROCEEDS FROM THE PROJECT WILL BE RETURNED
TO THE LAKE AGASSIZ ARTS COUNCIL WHERE
WE WILL REINVEST THESE FUNDS BACK INTO THE ARTS COMMUNITY.
THE LAKE AGASSIZ ARTS COUNCIL
IS AN ASSOCIATION OF ARTS ORGANIZATIONS,
ARTS-RELATED BUSINESSES, AND INDIVIDUAL ARTISTS.
IT BRINGS TOGETHER THE ARTS ORGANIZATIONS IN THE COMMUNITY
AND ADVOCATES FOR THEM AND SERVES THEM.
EACH ARTIST WAS GIVEN A STIPEND
WHICH PAID FOR MATERIALS AND MAYBE A LITTLE BIT MORE,
BUT THE NUMBER OF HOURS PUT INTO EACH ONE OF THOSE PIECES
IS FAR BEYOND WHAT WE PAID TO HAVE THEM DO IT.
"HERD ABOUT THE PRAIRIE" BRINGS TOGETHER
ART, BUSINESS, GOVERNMENT, AND AUDIENCE.
(Rick Stern) I'M ONE OF THE OWNERS OF STRAUS CLOTHING.
WHEN WE FIRST LEARNED OF
THE "HERD ABOUT THE PRAIRIE" THING, WE SAID, WOW,
THIS IS SOMETHING WE WANT TO GET INVOLVED IN.
KIM JORE AND I FIRST MET AT OUR CHURCH,
FIRST CONGREGATIONAL UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST,
IN MOORHEAD, AND SHE IS OUR CHURCH ARTIST.
SHE'D PAINTED A NICE PICTURE OF THE CHURCH, AND SHE'S PAINTED
THE WALLS OF THE CHURCH IN MURALS, AND I THOUGHT
SHE WOULD BE SOMEBODY THAT COULD DO ONE OF THESE BISON.
I TALKED TO HER ABOUT IT AND ENCOURAGED HER,
AND WE WERE ABLE TO SPONSOR HER.
AND MY IDEA WAS TO HAVE HER DO IT IN THE BASEMENT
OF THE CHURCH SO WE COULD ALL WATCH THE PROGRESS OF IT.
[thumb piano plays]

MY BISON'S NAME IS DIVERSITY,
AND I TOOK THE AMERICAN INDIAN,
AND HE'S OVERLOOKING THE PLAINS BADLANDS AREA
AT DIFFERENT RACES OF PEOPLE.
THERE'S HENRY BRIGHT WINGS,
HE IS A CROW INDIAN FROM THE MONTANA AREA.
THE INDIAN ON THE OTHER SIDE IS
RAIN IN THE FACE, HE IS A SIOUX INDIAN.
ON HIS LEGS, I HAVE INDIAN ART
SYMBOLISMS OF DIFFERENT THINGS
THEY USED ON THEIR TEEPEES AND INSTRUMENTS.
I USED TO HUNT WITH MY BROTHERS IN WESTERN NORTH DAKOTA,
AND SO I DECIDED TO USE PHEASANT FEATHERS.
AND THE TURKEY FEATHERS ARE
FROM A FRIEND HERE IN CHURCH.
ON THE TOP OF HIS HEAD,
THERE'S HAIR MIXED WITH PAINT
AND THAT'S SYMBOLISM OF PART OF MY LIFE.
I'M A HAIRDRESSER.

AS AN HONOR TO MY FATHER,
I PUT HIS BRAND FROM HIS CATTLE ON THERE
'CAUSE HE IS A RANCHER IN WESTERN NORTH DAKOTA.
IT WAS A WONDERFUL EXPERIENCE.
IT MADE ME GROW AS AN ARTIST
BECAUSE IT'S NOT WHAT I'M USED TO.
IT MADE ME STRETCH A LITTLE BIT.

(Martha Keeler Olsen) WHY BISON? WELL, WHEN YOU DO ONE OF THESE PROJECTS,
YOU WANT TO PICK AN ICON THAT HAS MEANING FOR THE COMMUNITY
OR THE REGION IN WHICH THESE OBJECTS ARE PLACED.
EVEN THOUGH THE BUFFALO ROAMING IN FARGO-MOORHEAD IS NOT
SOMETHING THAT WE AUTOMATICALLY THINK OF,
THE BISON IN THIS REGION
ARE VERY MUCH A PART OF THE LANDSCAPE OF OUR HISTORY.
[steady beat of a skin drum]
[man sings in his native language]
THE BUFFALO IS NAMED BUFFALO PATH, THE GATHERING.
I WORKED ON IT IN ONE OF THE BIGGEST STUDIOS
IN NORTH DAKOTA WHICH WAS WEST ACRES MALL.
WHEN WE TALK ABOUT OUR BUFFALO,
WE TALK ABOUT THE MAJESTIC PRESENCE OF A POWERFUL ANIMAL.
IT LEAVES A PATH THAT'S SOLID,
IT'S A SOLID FOUNDATION, AND THE GATHERING,
IT'S A GATHERING OF PEOPLES, A GATHERING OF COMMUNITY
AND FAMILY AND CULTURE.
TO THE NATIVE AMERICAN PEOPLE,
A BUFFALO IS A VERY SIGNIFICANT PART OF THEIR CULTURE,
VERY SIGNIFICANT IN 2 RESPECTS.
SPECIFICALLY ONE IS RELIGIOUS, CEREMONIAL AREA,
AND THE OTHER HAD TO DO WITH THEIR SURVIVAL.
[birds sing]
THE BUFFALO ITSELF TRADITIONALLY WAS USED
AS A SUPERMARKET FOR THE PLAINS PEOPLE.
IT WAS A SOURCE OF FOOD.
THE ROBES WERE USED FOR CEREMONIAL REASONS,
AND, OF COURSE, THEY WERE USING THEM TO CLOTHE THEMSELVES.
SOME OF THE BONES WERE USED FOR TOOLS.
CEREMONIALLY, THEY PRAYED WITH THE SKULL AND ASKED
THE SPIRIT OF THAT BUFFALO TO GUIDE THEM AND TO HELP THEM.
[drum beats; people sing in their native language]

WE HAD-- THE COMMUNITY PAINTED THE WHITE COAT,
AND THAT WAS TO ADD THE SPIRITUAL OR THE PEER FOUNDATION
TO IT-- TO THE COMMUNITY OR THE WHOLE GATHERING.
WHEN WE LOOK AT A SUNSET,
NO MATTER IF IT'S IN THE SOUTHWEST OR IN THE PLAINS
OR IN GERMANY, THE COLORS ARE THE SAME, AND SO I USED
THOSE KIND OF COLORS TO BRING LIGHT TO THE IMAGES ITSELF.
EACH HORSE REPRESENTS ALL THE INDIVIDUALS
THAT WERE PART OF THE DEVELOPMENT
OF THE OPENING AND CLOSING CEREMONIES.
THERE'S ACTUAL BEADWORK THAT'S DONE ON THE BUFFALO.
LITTLE IMAGES LIKE TEEPEES REPRESENT HOMES,
AND THEN THERE'S AN EAGLE THAT FLIES JUST ABOVE THE HOMES,
AND THAT'S TO BRING LIKE, GOOD LUCK AND GOOD FORTUNE
AND BRING THAT HEAVENLY BODY TO PROTECT THE HOME.
ON THE BUFFALO ITSELF,
YOU'LL SEE THAT THERE'S 5 FEATHERS ON THERE,
AND THOSE 5 FEATHERS, THEY REPRESENT 5 NATIONS.
BUT THE 6TH NATION IS THE NON-NATIVE NATION.
IT WAS A CHANCE TO BRING ALL THOSE COMMUNITIES TOGETHER.


(Martha Keeler Olsen) OTHER ARTISTS HAVE TAKEN THE BISON FIGURE
AND UNDERSTAND ITS RELATIONSHIP TO THE LANDSCAPE,
AND SO YOU'LL HAVE LOTS OF PRAIRIE LANDSCAPES,
AND THEY HAVE TAKEN OTHER CONCEPTS AND MOTIFS
THAT FIT THE HISTORY OR THE LANDSCAPE OF NORTH DAKOTA
AND MINNESOTA AND APPLIED THAT TO THE BISON FIGURE.
[acoustic guitar; finger-picking in bright rhythm]

MY THEME IS WEST TO DAKOTA,
AND IT'S TO RECOGNIZE THE IMMIGRANTS
THAT CAME TO NORTH DAKOTA IN THE LATE 1880S.
AND IT IS BASED ON MY FAMILY,
BUT I THINK THE WHOLE STORY WOULD BE TYPICAL
OF THOUSANDS THAT CAME AT THAT TIME.
THE THINGS I DEPICTED IS A SEGMENT
WHERE THEY CAME FROM WATSON, MINNESOTA,
TO GRAND HARBOR, NORTH DAKOTA,
WHICH IS NEAR DEVILS LAKE.
AND EVERYTHING I INCLUDED THERE, ITEMS AND THINGS LIKE THAT,
WERE ACTUALLY IN THE STORY THAT WAS WRITTEN ABOUT THIS JOURNEY.
THE FATHER AND THE 16-YEAR-OLD SON WENT BY TRAIN
AND TOOK THE SHEEP AND THE MACHINERY AND THE CHICKENS.
AND THE MOTHER AND THE OTHER 9 CHILDREN LEFT BY COVERED WAGON
WITH THE 15, 20 CATTLE, 4 HORSES, A COLT, A YOUNG CALF.
AND SO THERE ARE A COUPLE DIFFERENT ACTUAL INCIDENTS
THAT HAPPENED ON THE TRIP TOO, WHICH I PUT ON THERE.
ONE THING YOU'LL NOTICE, THAT THE COLORS ARE VERY MODERN,
ALMOST A PSYCHEDELIC TIE-DYE.
I'M TRYING TO SAY THAT TODAY IS TODAY, AND I WAS NOT THERE,
AND I'M TELLING ABOUT IT FROM TODAY'S PERSPECTIVE.


(Martha Keeler Olsen) THERE WERE THOSE WHO WERE
MORE SCULPTURE-ORIENTED AND DID ADD ITEMS TO THE BISON.
WE HAVE A BISON CALF.
IT'S OUR ONLY BISON CALF THAT WAS DONE BY A JURIED ARTIST,
AND LAID ONTO THIS PIECE IS RAKU POTTERY.
[synthesizer plays softly]
(Ruth Severson) THE NAME OF THIS PIECE
IS GOING TO BE SHATTERED CLOUD.
JAMESTOWN IS THE BUFFALO CITY,
AND WE HAVE A NATIONAL BUFFALO MUSEUM HERE.
WE ALSO HAVE AN ALBINO BUFFALO,
AND I STARTED THINKING ABOUT THIS ALBINO BUFFALO
AND HOW NEAT IT WOULD LOOK IN RAKU POTTERY.
OUR BUFFALO IS WHITE CLOUD,
AND SO BY HAVING THIS LITTLE GUY,
THEN I COULD HAVE MY SHATTERED CLOUD.
THE SHATTERED PART CAME WITH POTTERY SHARDS,
YOU KNOW, AND THEN WHEN I'D START THINKING CLOUD,
THAT'S WHEN THE WHITE AND BLUE ALL STARTED TO FEED INTO IT.
EACH PIECE IS ROLLED OUT
WITH A ROLLING PIN TO A GIVEN THICKNESS.
THEY WERE ACTUALLY FORMED TO THE BODY
AND ALLOWED TO DRY IN THAT POSITION.
THEN IT WAS BISQUE-FIRED JUST LIKE YOU WOULD
A NORMAL PIECE OF POTTERY.
THEN IT'S GLAZED, THEN IT'S PUT INTO A RAKU KILN
WHICH IS OPENED WHEN IT'S AT 1750 DEGREES.
AT THAT TEMPERATURE, YOU REMOVE YOUR PIECES
AND PUT THEM INTO A COMBUSTIBLE MATERIAL.
AND I LIKE TO USE STRAW IN TRASH CANS.
IT ALL WILL START ON FIRE,
THEN YOU PUT A LID ON IT TO SMOTHER THE FIRE.
WHAT YOU'RE BURNING AND WHAT YOU HAVE
MIXED INTO YOUR GLAZES MAKE THE DIFFERENT COLORS.
YOU CAN'T GET 2 PIECES ALIKE.
YOU TAKE IT OUT OF THERE,
AND YOU PUT IT INTO A BUCKET OF WATER,
AND IT'LL SIZZLE AND SNAP AND CARRY ON.
ONCE IT'S OUT OF THERE,
I SCRUB IT WITH SOFT SCRUB, AND IT'S READY TO GO.

WE HAVE EYELASHES TO GO ON.
THEY'RE OUT OF COPPER, YOU'VE GOT A COPPER BEARD,
AND YOU'LL HAVE COPPER ON HIS TAIL.
WE'VE GOT DICHROIC GLASS EYES SO THEY KINDA TWINKLE AT YOU
WHEN YOU LOOK AT HIM.
I FEEL REALLY HONORED THAT THE LAKE AGASSIZ ARTS COUNCIL
CHOSE ME AS ONE OF THEIR ARTISTS BECAUSE I HAD
A TEACHER THAT TOLD ME THAT I HAD ABSOLUTELY NO TALENT
AND THAT I SHOULD GO DO SOMETHING ELSE.
SO EVERY TIME SOMETHING TURNS OUT, I'M REALLY EXCITED!
[laughs]


(Martha Keeler Olsen) THE TABLETOP BISON MADE IT POSSIBLE FOR US TO PROVIDE
A BISON PURCHASE THAT WOULD BE A LITTLE BIT MORE AFFORDABLE
FOR PEOPLE AT THE AUCTION, AND THEY'LL FIT INSIDE ONE'S HOME.
NOT EVERYBODY CAN HAVE A FULL-SIZE BISON
IN THEIR LIVING ROOM OR THEIR BACKYARD.

FOUR FULL-SIZE BISON, 7 CALVES,
AND 15 TABLETOPS WERE DONE BY SCHOOLS OR EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS.
WITH THE INITIATIVE OF ART TEACHERS
AND THEIR CREATIVITY AND MAKING THEIR PROGRAMS
WORK AROUND THIS PARTICULAR MEDIUM,
MANY SCHOOLS WERE ABLE TO PARTICIPATE.

(Ronald Boehm) THE STUDENTS CAME UP WITH THE IDEA
LET'S MAKE IT LIFE AT CHENEY MIDDLE SCHOOL,
AND THAT'S WHERE THE IDEA CAME FOR JIGSAW PUZZLES
ALL FITTING TOGETHER AND WORKING.
LIFE SCIENCE, THEY DO DISSECTING THE FROGS
SO WE HAD THEIR DISSECTED FROG OVERHEAD SHEET
PROJECTED ON THERE AND DONE IT WITH PAINT AND COLORS.
WE HAVE ASPECTS COMING FROM ALL THE ATHLETIC EVENTS.
WE HAVE CHEERLEADING ON THERE ALREADY.
WE HAVE A BEAKER FOR EARTH SCIENCE STEAMING UP
AND TURNING INTO THE PLANETS AND THE MOON.
YOU CAN USE YOUR FINGERS!U CAN BE A GOOD FINGER PAIN.
AND DO YOU SEE HOW THAT WORKS?
I HAVE PAINTED THE JFK AND SOME OF THE FROG,
AND I'VE DRAWN THE MICROSCOPE.
(Ronald Boehm) OUR PTA WAS AS ENTHUSIASTIC AS I WAS FOR THE OPPORTUNITY
FOR THE STUDENTS TO BE INVOLVED IN THIS COMMUNITY-WIDE PROJECT,
AND WE WENT WITH A FULL-SIZE BISON AND THE CALF.
WE HAVE 8TH GRADERS SHOWING SOME THINGS TO 6TH GRADERS
THAT THEY'VE PICKED UP ALREADY
WHERE THE 6TH GRADERS MAYBE HAVEN'T HAD IT.
IT'S A VEHICLE FOR CREATIVE THINKING, EXPRESSION, AWARENESS.
IT GOES BEYOND THE REALM OF ART STUDENTS IN THE CLASSROOM.


WHEN YOU HEAR THE ARTISTS TALK ABOUT THEIR WORK,
YOU REALIZE HOW MUCH OF THEIR HEART IS
IN EACH AND EVERY INCH OF THAT STATUE.
[piano plays in bright tone]

(Elizabeth Stromme) THE NAME OF OUR BUFFALO
IS THE ITALIAN WORD FOR PEACE, "PACE."
WE JUST THOUGHT THERE SHOULD JUST BE
MORE PEACE IN THE WORLD, DOGGONE IT.
AND CRANES ARE A SYMBOL FOR PEACE, FOR LONGEVITY,
FOR HAPPINESS, FOR BEING MESSENGERS--
PHYSICAL REALM TO THE SPIRITUAL REALM.
THEY'RE ALSO BEING REPOPULATED IN THE PLAINS.
OUR CONCEPT WAS THAT ORIGINALLY.
BUT THEN MY SON WAS KILLED IN THAT SNOWMOBILE ACCIDENT
DECEMBER 3RD, AND I DIDN'T WANT ANYTHING TO DO WITH IT.
YOU KNOW, RIGHT AFTER THE SERVICE AND ALL THAT,
I DECIDED THERE'S NO WAY I WAS GONNA BE INVOLVED,
BUT THEN I THOUGHT ABOUT IT FOR A FEW DAYS, AND I TALKED
TO DEE, AND I SAID ZACH LIVED HIS LIFE TO THE FULLEST,
AND HE LOVED STATUES AND SCULPTURE,
SO WE JUST TWEAKED OUR DESIGN A LITTLE BIT
TO HAVE IT PERTAIN MORE TO ZACH'S LIFE,
BUT STILL WITH THE CRANES, BECAUSE IT STILL WORKS
AS A VERY KIND OF A SPIRITUAL CONCEPT.

THE IMAGE ON THE HEAD IS THE TREE OF LIFE.
IT'S A CELTIC SYMBOL OF IMMORTALITY
AND THE SOUL'S EVOLUTION FROM ONE STEP TO THE OTHER.
YOU WILL SEE THE IMAGE OF THE BACK VIEW
OF MY CHILDREN, ONE BEING NICK, AND ONE BEING ZACH,
AND ZACH'S FIGURE IS EMBELLISHED WITH A GOLD METALLIC PAINT
TO SIGNIFY A LITTLE BIT MORE OF A SPIRITUAL PRESENCE.
AND THEY'RE FOLDING PEACE CRANES, THE CHILDREN
THROWING UP THE PEACE CRANE INTO THE AIR,
AND THE CRANE WILL TURN FROM THE PAPER-FOLDED OBJECT
INTO THE REAL CRANES AS THEY FLY AROUND
THE BACKSIDE OF THE BUFFALO AND TURN INTO PEACE WORDS.
THE CRANES ARE GOING TO BE COMING THIS WAY
FOLLOWING THE ULTRALIGHT.
THE ULTRALIGHT IS HOW THEY TRAIN THESE BIRDS
TO FLY BACK AND FORTH FROM THE MIDWEST DOWN TO FLORIDA,
AND THERE'S A FELLA SITTING IN THE ULTRALIGHT
WEARING A CRANE OUTFIT.
I PUT IN THE BEEKEEPER
BECAUSE MY HUSBAND IS A BEEKEEPER.
MY SON ALSO IS IN THE BUSINESS.
[with much emotion] WE'RE ALL GOING THROUGH THE GRIEF IN A DIFFERENT WAY,
BUT THIS HAS REALLY HELPED ME.
I MEAN THIS BIG GUY HAS GOT A LOT TO TEACH ME.


I HOPE THAT IT'LL BRING AN AWARENESS AND APPRECIATION
OF THE VALUE THAT THE ARTS COMMUNITY BRINGS TO FARGO
BECAUSE IT DOES ADD TO OUR QUALITY OF LIFE,
AND IT MAKES FARGO
THE INTERESTING HIP PLACE THAT IT IS!












(woman) FUNDING FOR "HERD ABOUT THE PRAIRIE"
A VIRTUAL ART STAMPEDE" WAS PROVIDED BY
THE LAKE AGASSIZ ARTS COUNCIL
AND BY THE MEMBERS OF PRAIRIE PUBLIC.
TO ORDER A DVD COPY OF "HERD ABOUT THE PRAIRIE:
A VIRTUAL ART STAMPEDE," WHICH INCLUDES
ADDITIONAL VIDEO AND INTERVIEWS WITH PARTICIPATING ARTISTS
CALL...
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