Come Saturday, the dedication of the “Sentinel of the Plains” sculpture will be held at The Brinton Museum in Big Born. The event begins at 1:30 p.m. Members of the Brinton’s American Indian Advisory Council will bless the proceedings.
Installed last November at the entrance of the Forrest E. Mars, Jr. Building at the Brinton, it is a monument-sized sculpture and was commissioned by Forrest and Jacomien Mars. Mr. Mars died last year and was a significant supporter of the museum’s expansion and mission.
“This was a wonderful project,” Shippen said Monday afternoon. “He was amazing.”
Shippen writes that the Native American depicted in the work is “standing tall and resolute, the Sentinel pays tribute to the strength of character, tenacity and endurance of Native peoples everywhere.”
Shippen grew up in the Lander area, attending schools in Crowheart and Dubois. “The work is significant,” he adds, “because I grew up with the Shoshone and Arapahoe.”
His parents had a home in Lander and for many years; Shippen taught art at Central Wyoming College. After he received his Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Wyoming in 1984, he worked in the Harry Jackson Studios in Cody and Camaiore, Italy. His bronzes, as well as many others, were cast in Pietrasanta, Italy, a leading foundry of Europe where he got to know a number of famous sculptors. “It’s the city of bronze, artists meet at the foundry.” He established a studio in Cody in 1978 and has a second gallery in Tubac, Arizona. Shippen began showing at The Brinton in 1984.
The dedication is open to the public.
Today, we bade farewell to Phil and Maggie Ashley. Phil was the Press’ marketing director for five years, managing both the advertising and circulation departments. He and Maggie are relocating to northwest South Carolina, just a few miles from Clemson University. (When the Tigers won the national championship last year, he was pretty smug about it, taking a solid week before the Clemson banners and memorabilia came down.)
Phil was essential in the developmental success of our Destination Sheridan magazines, getting involved pretty much from the jump. It’s grown from one issue to four annually and we partner with the Chamber and the Sheridan WYO Rodeo to publish first-rate magazines. He also steadily guided the ‘Black Friday’ market coverage edition of the Press, was active in newspaper activities like our rodeo parade float, our softball team, our costume parties and our frozen turkey bowling. He’s been an integral member of our management team. We’re grateful for his leadership.
Phil was also a career Air Force non-commissioned officer, retiring as a senior master sergeant with deployments all over the world. Phil’s returning to land that’s been in his family for generations. I’m thinking that Phil and Maggie, who loved camping and fishing in the Bighorns, will miss those weekend trips in Shell Canyon and elsewhere.
We wish them the best.
“Friends are the family you choose for yourself.”
— Mark Twain, American writer, 1835-1910