Sunday, 13 May 2012

Nessie sculpture creators come forward, put another in river


Some excess cement, inspiration from the boss and downtime at an Eau Claire business yielded a sculpture of a Loch Ness Monster that drew national media attention last week.
Workers at Silvermine Stone, 1807 N. Oxford Ave., created the three-piece statue in late April and planted it in the Chippewa River, just off the riverbank behind their cement factory, just north of the Madison Street bridge.
"We didn't think it would get this big," said Rich Mickelson, co-owner of the business and mastermind behind "Nessie," a nickname for the mythical creature.
Between the unexplained appearance of the sea monster sculpture, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources opposition to its placement in the river and interest from local businesses — including home improvement giant Menards — to buy it, the story spread across the nation.
The artists previously had remained anonymous, known by the pseudonym "The Phoenix." But Silvermine Stone employees said they might as well come forward because friends began suspecting they were behind the sculpture due to the proximity of the cement factory to the monster.
Starting from scrap
It all started because there was plenty of leftover cement from a test batch the company mixed from a new supplier.

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