Boyne City’s Last River Draw statue project closer to reality

boyne last river draw
Pictured from varying sides is the clay sculpture of what will become a bronze statue.

The Last River Draw, a life-size bronze sculpture of a logger standing on a floating log drawing logs down the Boyne River, is another step closer to an installation this fall.

Martha Sulfridge, local artist and sculptor, is finalizing the clay model.

The next step will be to produce molds that will go to a foundry for casting.

The foundry process, along with the extensive engineering that is required to install a floating sculpture in the river, will take several more months.

The efforts of many are involved in this very complex process.

A crowdfunding campaign was successfully completed in February and March where the community exceeded its goal for the matching grant.

The additional funds were critical to the project due to the extensive engineering and installation that will accompany a piece of this magnitude.

“We had such an outpouring of support during our fundraising efforts,” said Lori Meeder, executive director of the Boyne City Main Street Program.

“The larger donors have been presented with a beautiful artist’s rendering of the logger. We had 13 prints framed, signed and dated by Martha. It is a classic work of art that we hope the donors enjoy for years to come.”

Through online donations and the many fundraising efforts, more than 500 people donated to the crowdfunding initiative.

“Because of the collaborative nature of the crowdfunding efforts, the piece will be a community asset that everyone can feel a part of and we hope that we get a large crowd to join us for the installation ceremony that will take place yet this fall if all goes well,” said Sulfridge.

The Last River Draw will be the community’s first permanent piece to complement the Walkabout Sculpture Tour, an exhibit that features varying pieces each year from artists around the state.

On June 24, nine new pieces will be installed around downtown and the parks and in place.

Jim White, one of the major donors to The Last River Draw project is pictured with project sculptor Martha Sulfridge.
Jim White, one of the major donors to The Last River Draw project is pictured with project sculptor Martha Sulfridge.

 

Pat O'brien is pictured with Sulfridge and his unique portion of the sketch she made for what will become a bronze statue along the Boyne River.
Pat O’brien is pictured with Sulfridge and his unique drawing she made for what will become a bronze statue along the Boyne River.
Pictured from varying sides is the clay sculpture of what will become a bronze statue.
Pictured from varying sides is the clay sculpture of what will become a bronze statue.