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October 17, 2008

Crowd gathers for ULM Warhawk sculpture dedication

A crowd of University of Louisiana Monroe faculty, staff and students gathered by the ULM Library Thursday, Oct. 16, to officially dedicate the bronze Warhawk sculpture and to welcome its creator, Sandy Scott, one of the country’s premier animal sculptors.

The 2,000-pound bronze Warhawk statue, complete with its 17-foot wingspan and bolted to a 9-feet-tall base, is an important part of ULM’s culture, said ULM President James Cofer. Cofer dedicated the bronze statue to all students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends of ULM.

“Its story is very important. Right after the very successful transition to the Warhawk as the new mascot, we looked for a way to represent it like it had never been done before. This sculpture is a powerful symbol that gives you new energy when you cross campus. We are very proud of it.”

Cofer also thanked Scott for creating the beautiful statue. The artist promised she would visit ULM again. “I’d like to express my pride at being here in Monroe at this fine institution, and to see the Warhawk installed in such a beautiful landscape.” After participating in ULM’s Warhawk dedication, Scott continued on to the Presidential Library in Little Rock, Ark., where another one of her pieces will be displayed.

ULM First Lady Deborah Cofer and Executive Assistant to the President Dr. Richard Hood thought of the idea for the statue in 2006. The installation of the statue was completed in May 2008 by John Kinkade, director of the National Sculptor’s Guild from Loveland, Colo.

Micah Pulliam, Student Government Association president, expressed his appreciation for this. “The students were brought in from the very beginning. This sculpture shows that the university is supporting its mascot, and it’s something that the community can get behind. The statue was funded through private dollars, after all, from donors who believe in ULM. The sculpture says, ‘We’re the Warhawks, and we’re here to stay.’”

Hannah Livingston, a junior business management major from Jonesboro, agreed. “I think it’s a wonderful piece of art, and it’s an excellent example of how ULM is embracing the Warhawk.”

Which is wonderful news to the piece’s creator, who loves to catch its image on the ULM Web site. Scott said, “It’s been such a privilege to make your Warhawk, and to see it in a public setting like this, so highly visible. It’s been a great adventure.”

More information about Sandy Scott, according to

Sculptor and printmaker Sandy Scott feels very strongly for, and about, her subject. She has quickly climbed to the top of her field using observation, incorporating a sense of motion and mood and attentively fine-tuning her skills. A widely admired printmaker of sporting scene etchings in the 1970s, Scott turned to sculpting in the early 1980s, focusing primarily on birds. Nearly two decades later, she has matured technically and artistically moving adeptly between subjects wild and domestic, including keen-eyed eagles, sinuous trout, elegant dogs, robust pigs, powerful horses, exotic macaws and arrogant roosters.

Today Scott is recognized as one of the country's leading animal sculptors. Her work has been collected throughout the world by major art collections. Her unique background has enabled her to capture the spirit of her subjects with a heartfelt vitality and technical skill.

"With a father who is an outdoorsman, my love of the outdoors was cultivated at an early age," explains Scott. "I've always loved to fish, and I've backpacked and camped in some of this country's most beautiful places." This lifestyle has left lasting impressions on her, and it is this feeling of love for nature that radiates from her work.

Although at times she works in the field, Scott prefers the calm of the studio for her creative work. "But it is not feasible to stage a herd of elk or a gaggle of geese in my studio, so I rely on my field trips for inspiration. Much of my fieldwork is done with a camera, and I have thousands of frames of 35mm film that provide a very valuable source of reference. I strive to retain in my work the feeling and emotion experienced while observing, sketching, and photographing in the field.”

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