RAM celebrates donation from Behr family, launches contest to name sculpture

RIVERFRONT MUSEUM PARK — The Rockford Art Museum announced a major donation to the RAM Collection by Lon and Richard Behr, and launched a contest inviting the public to help name a sculpture.

Montana-based artist Deborah Butterfield made the steel horse piece with scrap material from Joseph Behr and Sons in Rockford. Now, together with the Behrs, RAM has invited the community to help name the sculpture.




“We selected this sculpture to donate to Rockford Art Museum for several reasons,” the Behrs said in a statement. “First, the artist, Deborah Butterfield, ranks amongst the top sculptors of our day. Her work is owned by over 100 museums, including some of America’s most prestigious; New York’s Metropolitan and Whitney, Washington’s Hirschhorn, Chicago’s Contemporary, and Art Institute, to mention a few. Her work has been acquired by a myriad of America’s foremost collectors.

“Second, the horse is an object all ages can relate to. Third, her ability to use found objects to achieve elegant results is inspirational to art admirers, artists and would be artists. Fourth, the material in this sculpture, like many of her welded horses, came from Joseph Behr & Sons, a scrap yard in Rockford.

“Finally, in an era where recycling is regarded as essential, what better use of obsolete material to produce a truly beautiful object?”

Butterfield’s work has been exhibited across the country since 1976. Her work is included in numerous public collections, including the Art Institute of Chicago.




The nationally acclaimed artist will make the final selection for the name from entries submitted in RAM’s Name the Horse Contest. Open to all ages, it runs through January 2, 2018. Participants may submit more than one entry; entries must be submitted in person at Rockford Art Museum at 711 N. Main St. The winning name of the sculpture will be announced January 8, and the person who submitted the winning entry will receive a free membership to RAM.

For more information visit rockfordartmuseum.org. R.

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