Wednesday, September 20, 2000

Pig Parade: The Button Glutton

Students design a button-down ham

By Owen Findsen
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        This is 144th in a series spotlighting pigs from the Big Pig Gig Public Art Project taking place in Cincinnati, Covington and Newport. Find past pig profiles at

        “The pig is in the house!” announced the principal at Sycamore High School. The undressed pig had arrived. When it left, it was covered with buttons.

        Artists: Sycamore ninth through 12th graders. Emily Vaughn designed the pig with assistance from Marissa Lin, Lauren Zennecker, Samantha Tessel and Alex Baxter. Kat Rakel-Ferguson was the supervising teacher.

        Sponsor: Sycamore High School.

[photo] | ZOOM |
        This pig's pen: Lytle Park.

        What's the pig idea? Swirls of color with circles of images designed by various students and nearly all covered with dressmakers' buttons. We have more than 2,200 students and 150 staff members. We wanted to do something that involved everyone. If you donated a button, you got to be on the pig.

        You want people to look at this pig and think: Wow! That's a lot of buttons.

        Completing the project took: Four weeks.

        What's the matter?: Acrylic paints, buttons, silicone, polyurethane.

        Your high on the hog was: The kids raised the money to sponsor the pig themselves, with bake sales, contests and individual donations from community members.

        Pig peeve: Putting on the wings, but our custodian Dan Penny solved the problem.

        Best pig tale: The day the pig arrived at the school, our principal, Chuck Mason, made a hog call over the P.A. and said, “the pig is in the house.” We had a parade through the school with the pig, the art club and pep band.

        What artistic movement most affected the outcome of this pig? Dada, spontaneous chance.

        What do you call this pig: Girlfriend.

        The materials cost: $1,900 for the pig, $300 for supplies.


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- Pig Parade: The Button Glutton
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