Note: This is the fourth installment of my daily blog during Husker Harvest Days, which continues through today - Sept. 17. See links to other blogs from this week in related links below.
Second note: In the original post we mispelled Mr. Holbert's name, we have corrected that here.
On Tuesday, I had some images from the Monday prep day ahead of this week's Husker Harvest Days and in that installment I featured a photo of a bull sculpture and said sculpture that I'd get information about that piece of art. And in this blog I keep the promise.
On close inspection you'll find that the bull is an anatomically correct representation of a Longhorn Bull. The key is how the artist pulled together such disparate pieces of what many would call junk to create a stellar representation of a longhorn bull.
Dean Holbert, Concordia, Kan., is the artist who created the longhorn because he liked that cattle - because as he says "they produce small calves." In the case of this work of art, his name is Leonard, after a longhorn breeder the artist respected, and bought his first cattle from.
Holbert is a quiet man, though proud of his work. He doesn't normally do metal sculpture. "We have a few small things I've made," he says. "I just decided to build a longhorn." It's his personal masterpiece, and the loving detail (and his sense of whimsy) make it fun art too.
As you can see from the few detail images I've added here, Leonard is made up of a lot of different items. He's a collection of wrenches, locks, latches, and unique items that add up to one Texas Longhorn bull.
For example, those impressive horns - 186 railroad spikes. And throughout Holbert's sense of humor shines in the details. Not to be indelicate let's just say nuts (like in nuts and bolts) were used in a strategic location. And Holbert worked on the insides too, since the sculpture is taken to schools. You can find an intestine (a drop tube from a grain drill) and a stomach that's clearly labeled "intake" and "outgo."
Holbert says he likes to keep those things simple for children who are obviously fascinated by this touchable art. Every time I went by the piece, which was situated outside of CPS on the East Road (we call it Seed Row), there were interested people and children.
This bull gets around, it's been to Husker Harvest Days before, and it's probably headed to Kansas City to be on display during the Big Barbecue the 1st of October.
Holbert says he started working on the sculpture on October 31, 2011 and it was finished on April 1, 2012 (you read that right, April Fool's day).
When asked if he was a retired farmer, Holbert says he isn't retired, doesn't know how to. So he continues to farm raising sweet feeds and hay. He sold off his cattle awhile ago and rents the pasture to another where cows and calves still graze. And in his spare time, he's taking Leonard on tour.