Background of The Art of the Horse project

Published 10:00 pm Friday, March 18, 2016

By now, most people have seen or heard a bit about Art of the Horse but few actually know

what the project is, its purpose or all that has already gone into the project thus far.


As part of Our Carolina Foothills (a local 501(c)(3) that was organized to educate the public on the small towns in the Carolina Foothills of Landrum, Tryon, Columbus and Saluda), the Art of the Horse is a 16-month community arts project and fundraising campaign.


Beginning last May with a call out to artists, the project was officially set into motion. Once artists’ submissions were received, an anonymous jury from Asheville Art Museum selected the

top 20 submissions that were then taken to area businesses, philanthropic community members

and government offices. Sponsorship was sold for $2,000 per horse. Monies from sponsors

went towards the purchase price of the horse, shipping costs and monies to auto body shops to

finish the horses. Sponsorships concluded last fall and 15 horses were ordered.


In November, the horses arrived to a very windy day. Unfortunately, one gust of wind shattered several of the horses as they toppled over like dominoes while waiting to be loaded onto horse trailers. Luckily, thanks to Stott’s Ford, they were repaired quickly and at a substantial savings.

Still, we were in the red on a project that really hadn’t even begun. A silent donor, who happened to be present during the unloading dock at Main Street Financial donated $500 and the remainder of the $2,000 repair bill was shared by the horse sponsors each contributing an additional $100.

The horses that were undamaged were delivered to artists that day via (what other than?) horse trailers.

Most horses are still being completed by the artists and it has been a true pleasure to visit these talented individuals at their studios and in their homes over the last couple of months to watch the transformations from white shell to unique, one of a kind sculptures.

As horses are completed, they are picked up, again by volunteers, and driven to AllAmerican Auto Body shop in Columbus. There they are being auto body finished so that they can withstand the elements as they near their next journey, which happens in April and May.

Stay tuned for more updates in March or log onto Our Carolina Foothills web or Facebook pages to see highlights of the entire project.


– Submitted by Mindy Wiener