Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Oregon Sculpture Trail [ The Eternal Indian - by Lorado Taft]

The Eternal Indian
popularly known as The Black Hawk
by Lorado Taft
1911 / concrete
Location: Lowden State Park,  Oregon, Illinois.

Is it really Black Hawk?
Although it is called Black Hawk, the statue does not represent any one man. Instead it is a tribute to all Native Americans, especially those who lived along the Rock River.

One Man's Dream
Before this area was a State Park, it was an artist's colony, known as Eagle's Nest. Every summer for nearly 50 years, painters, sculptors and dancers gathered here to escape the city's heat of Chicago and enjoy the great outdoors.
One artist was sculptor named Lorado Taft. He was inspired by the beauty of the Rock River and the story of Black Hawk. He pictured an Indian standing with folded arms on the rocky bluff gazing out at his lost land. He dreamed making a statue so the legacy of the Indian would not be forgotten.

The Dream Became Concrete..
Dreaming of a 50 foot tall statue was a lot easier than building it... especially on top of a 250 foot cliff. First, workers shaped the staue's frame. Working on a scaffold, they covered steel rods with chicken wire and wrapped it all in plaster-soaked burlap to look like the folds of an Indian blanket. The head was sculpted seperately and mounted in place to make sure the staue was looking in the right direction. After the concrete had set over the winter, the mold was carefully chipped away. luckily, everything worked! the result is this magnificient staue you see here..

From the other side... IL Route 2, across the Rock River

From the other side...IL Route 2, across the Rock River

Rock River, Illinois.
A  Day Trip to Oregon: Tuesday,  June 26, 2012
Part I: Lorado Taft
[The Eternal Indian - by Lorado here..
& works by artists at Eagle Nest Colony at Oregon Public Library]
Part II: Community Art Legacy Program
Part III [Paths of Conviction, Footsteps of Fate - by Jeff Adams]
The Eternal Indian - by Lorado Taft]


Terry said...

I had the opportunity to see this from the opposite side of the river. The scale is breath taking not to mention the setting for the sculpture. How did you know how it was made? I found that very interesting

Jyoti said...

Terry - Details of how the sculpture was made, are written on the marker. I wrote the text from the marker at the site! And it is very interesting. Making a 50 foot statue is quite something! Looks awesome!