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9 > Image 9 of Kentucky Alumnus, vol. 65, no. 3, 1995

Part of Kentucky alumnus

! . f * rtf; K , ;. A if \ T ~ j . . . . it e. it A I . . . . .q $<# ss:== I e e >a`*`.. az ` . V ' ` A ;` ` - l - * ? 5 ' =,= 2 " ` A t By Kayjohnson Thanks to the dedication, enthusiasm l she took it over." y and creativity of a couple of UK alumni, Meadows immediately began recruiting I more folks are becoming aware of the need volunteers she sent letters to all of y to preserve some often neglected Kentucky j Kentuckys arts councils, museums, historical A treasures. l societies and chambers of commerce. They SOS! Save Outdoor Sculpture! a got good response, and she says, got some campaign to first identify, and then protect good publicity in various areas. outdoor sculpture, is being carried out by the ' "We trained 70 people, but some have fall- largest volunteer corps to ever tackle a cultur- j en out along the way. Its a lot of work to ask a al project in the United States. SOS! volun- r volunteer to do." Inventory reports, compiled teers are locating, inventorying and assessing j by the volunteers, list the artist, title, date, the condition of thousands of the nations l material, dimensions, location, history and sculptures, ranging from 18th century revolu- condition of each of the outdoor sculptures. tionary war heroes to contemporary works on This information is added to the Inventory of public plazas. American Sculpture, a new database already in SOS! is sponsored by the National use by researchers and maintained by the Museum of American Art (Smithsonian National Museum ofAmerican Art. Institution) and the National Institute for the r Across the United States outdoor sculp- Y Conservation of Cultural Property, both locat- tures have been placed everywhere from parks ed in Washington, D.C. l to traffic islands to celebrate or commemorate l Kentuckys SOS! efforts are headed by j the people and events most significant in a { Irwin Pickett 7O and Lori Meadows 85. , communitys history. Often little thought is i Pickett is director of visual arts for the l given to the sculptures upkeep. Onehalf of l Kentucky Arts Council, and Meadows is the l the sculptures surveyed so far needs conserva- . Kentucky SOS! project coordinator. They tion treatment. More than l0 percent require I have been working on the project for two l urgent care. ThV0d5Mki5 vuiside years, though Pickett says the national project j A key factor in sculpture degradation is the UKA" MS?' [md started a couple of years before then. acid rain. Arthur Beale, director of research at {gwpmgmimblmg _ They had been sending us material and A the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, explains: if information about it and had made the offer When sculptures are exposed they slowly dis- Cmmfmthg Am in of grants avail- l solve. Their surfaces are lost. And since sculp- L0uiS,,illg_ ; able to several I ture depends on surface, when its lost, its I organizations gone forever." Damage is also caused by hurri- lj J and museums canes, floods, earthquakes, vandalism, acci- j but nobody ever dents and neglect. took them up on Answering the question of who hasjuris- it. I thought it l diction over a work may be the most impor- was a tant aspect of the survey, says National great idea. Museum of American Art director Elizabeth Lori had A Broun. Often no one remembers how the just finished a similar sculptures were commissioned or whos project in textiles, so I called her and responsible for them. They might suffer Fall 1995 Kentucky Alumnus 7