The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

WSU welcomes a new sculpture to campus

Unveiling ceremony will be held Friday at 4:30 p.m.
The sculpture, “Red Forest” is a gift from alumnus Howard Wright in honor of his mother

A new bronze casted horse sculpture is set to be unveiled Friday afternoon in front of the Veterinary Teaching Hospital, gifted to the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art by a WSU alum.

Standing just shy of 8 feet tall, the large bronze sculpture, named “Red Forest” is a gift from alumnus Howard Wright, founder and chair of Seattle Hospitality Group.

Wright studied foreign language and political science during his time at WSU, before graduating in 1976, he said. The statue is in honor of his mother, Theiline Scheumann, who had a great long-working relationship with Dr. Leo K. Bustad.

As the dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine from 1973–84, Dr. Bustad is largely known for his work dedicated to understanding human-animal bonds.

Sculptor Deborah Butterfield created “Red Forest” in 2013. Butterfield focuses solely on sculpting horses, yet what makes her sculptures unique is the driftwood skeletal appearance, typically cast in bronze. Butterfield also creates horse sculptures made from scrap metal or other materials, according to artnet

Wright’s mother was a professional horsewoman and had a thoroughbred horse farm, Wright said. Her horses were patients/clients of Dr. Bustad’s and he helped to inspire her horse breeding and horse racing achievements, according to WSU Insider

“I thought this would be a nice tribute to her, her support of the school and her support of me going to school,” Wright said. 

Placing art in the eyes of students, staff and anyone who visits WSU highlights the integral benefit that art is in relation to belonging and culture, Ryan Hardesty, Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art executive director, said. 

“It’s also such a perfect fit in terms of here’s an artist who has worked with the form of the horse across her entire career,” Hardesty said. “Now that this work is being cited permanently outside of the vet med hospital, you know with their history of care of horses and other animals, I think that’s just a lovely kind of comparison.”

Butterfields’ sculpture work has appeared in the Seattle Art Museum, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Art Institute of Chicago and many other exhibits. She splits her time between studios in Hawaii and Montana, and has received a slew of awards including the 2022 Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Sculpture Center and a Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, according to Masterworks Fine Art Gallery

The unveiling ceremony will take place at 4:30 p.m. on Friday at the entrance to the Veterinary Teaching Hospital. Multiple speakers including WSU President Kirk Schulz, WSU Chancellor Elizabeth Chilton and Wright will be at the unveiling, Hardesty said. 

Registration for the event is encouraged but not mandatory and can be found here.

More to Discover