Denny Haskew’s small and monumental figurative bronze sculptures are part of “Geography of Hope,” a two-artist show at Sorrel Sky Gallery opening on June 2 that also features contemporary Western paintings of ranch life, cowboys, cowgirls, Native Americans and native flora by Maura Allen.
“Strength of the Maker,” one of Haskew’s monumental sculptures, is a show-stopper.
“I was on my knees at an aerobics class when I got the idea for this piece,” recalls Haskew, a member of the Potawatomi Citizen Nation. “I liked the motion that inspired the work, so I became my own model.”
Although he enjoys the scale and feel of monumental sculptures, Haskew admits they are quite a challenge to execute. “I have to function as an engineer to figure out how things work,” he adds. “It gets tough as the size gets bigger. Mistakes are magnified.”
Haskew draws inspiration for his figurative work from a variety of sources. He was at a powwow in Oklahoma when the idea for “Honor the Holy Ones,” which portrays a mother and child, came to mind. “An action, idea or story may inspire a new piece,” he says, “or something may just catch my eye.”
A native of Colorado who currently lives in Loveland, Haskew spent the early part of his adult life as a ski instructor in Utah, a whitewater river guide in the Grand Canyon, a carpenter and a furniture maker. When he discovered his passion for bronze sculpture, he connected with sculptors Fritz White and Kent Ullberg to help him understand the intricacies of monumental work.
To date, Haskew has placed more than 50 monumental pieces in public places including the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C. and the Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa, Oklahoma.