Bell Mare

13"h x 29"l x 6"w; 2006
Photos by Kendrick Moholt

I sculpted my “Bell Mare” in 2006. In 2011, we were having a celebration party for my parents’ 60th wedding anniversary. My good friend Chuck Fraser, and his wife Chris came over from Joseph, OR, to attend the event. We were having a beer, and cooking a dead pig, or parts thereof, and Chuck plopped an 8x10 photo down on the picnic table, and said: “Hey, Crawford, what do you think of this?” 

 

It was a photo of a young woman’s chest, her hands pulling back against the neckline of her top, to expose more of her 

Bronze horse sculpture that incorporates various sized bells into the body of the horse.
Horse sculpture which incorporates bronze bells into the form.
Shoulder detail of the bronze bells making up the body of a bronze horse sculpture.

chest. There, in a full color tattoo, was my “Bell Mare”, reaching almost clear across her body. The woman’s name is Emma, whom Chuck had come across her at a blacksmith conference on Mt. Hood. She had overheard a conversation that led her to believe Chuck might know me, due to our mutual ties to Wallowa County. I met Emma sometime later. It came out that she was quite concerned as to copyright infringement. I assured her that, despite her fears, I was content to lend her the image. I felt honored that someone would find something that I had made, so compelling as to have it tattooed on her body, to wear every day for the rest of her life. I only hope she never regrets it. And it beats a billboard all to hell!