On Saturday, May 30, the National Sporting Library & Museum (NSLM) in Middleburg, Va., will host a symposium and reception celebrating the recent gift of the bronze sculpture Sea Hero.
Through the generous bequest of Paul Mellon, the large-scale bronze of the champion thoroughbred Sea Hero is now part of the NSLM art collection.
The 1995 bronze is by British sculptor Tessa Pullan (b. 1953), a student of equestrian artist John Skeaping (1901- 1980). The sculpture, which stands over 7 feet high and weighs almost 2 tons, was recently installed in the boxwood garden of the NSLM campus.
Sea Hero is famous for winning the Kentucky Derby in 1993, which was the first Derby win for owner Paul Mellon; trainer Mack Miller; and jockey Jerry Bailey. Sea Hero is currently the oldest living Derby winner.
Fine art conservator Andrew Baxter shares highlights from his long career of caring for and restoring sculpture in the Mellon collections and the museum world. With before and after photos, he discusses the fascinating techniques of conservation and restoration.
Sculpture expert and artist Ben Gage illustrates how large-scale artworks are transported and installed. Gage has worked with massive sculptures at major museums throughout the country and shares
behind-the-scenes stories and images of some of his favorite projects, including the installation of Sea Hero at the NSLM.
Author and racing historian Edward Bowen discusses Paul Mellon as a horse breeder and owner. Bowen's expertise as a renowned horse racing historian will give depth to the history of the Mellon and Rokeby Stable racing legacy.
The National Sporting Library & Museum is dedicated to preserving, promoting and sharing the literature, art and culture of equestrian, angling and field sports. Founded in 1954, NSLM holds thousands of books on sporting topics including hunting, angling, equestrianism and horseracing, among others. The Library collection dates from the 16th-21st centuries. The Museum houses exhibits of American and European animal and sporting fine art. Information is shared through exhibitions, lectures, seminars, publications and special events. The NSLM is open to researchers and the general public. Hours: Wednesday - Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.