An unidentified vandal drew eyes and a mouth onto the Feldman-Horn cougar statue, defacing the artwork with what appeared to be a black marker.
Video I students Alex Copeland ’15 and Spencer Perryman ’15 noticed the markings while filming their first manual zoom assignment on Sept. 13.
“My first reaction was, ‘that shouldn’t be there,’” Perryman said. “I was disappointed because [Feldman-Horn] is a really nice area, and the defacing of the sculpture is childish and ruins a nice piece of work.”
Archivist Alan Sasaki said the statue is worth tens of thousands of dollars.
When Feldman-Horn Gallery was dedicated, the family displayed their personal art collection at the facility’s inauguration. Sasaki said many faculty members were enamored with the cougar, a Gwynn Murrill bronze, so the family donated a recast piece to the school.
“Whoever did it was clueless,” video art teacher Alyssa Sherwood said. “If you were at LACMA or anywhere else, really, you would never think to mark up the sculptures.”
Security had no footage of the vandal. In response to the vandalism, a new camera will be installed to surveil Feldman-Horn.
Director of Campus Operations Jim De Matte reacted to the issue an hour or so after Video I students alerted Sherwood to the vandalism. Using specific sculpture maintenance directions acquired when the Wolverine statues were dedicated on both campuses, maintenance workers were able to clean the cougar.