NORMAN — Paul Moore’s beginnings were humble enough, but the Norman resident and University of Oklahoma artist-in-residence is now well-known throughout the state, nationally and internationally.
Though many wouldn’t recognize him on the street, even as he passes to and from his studio space on Main Street, his iconic pieces — like the Seed Sower on OU campus — have granted Moore notoriety as a figurative sculptor.
Among his most famous pieces is his Oklahoma Centennial Land Run Monument in Oklahoma City’s Bricktown. Once completed, according to the city of Oklahoma City website, the 45 life and one-half size figures of land run participants racing to claim new homesteads will be one of the largest freestanding bronze sculptures in the world, spanning a distance of 365 feet in length by 36 feet in width and over 16 feet in height.
Now 13 years in the making — with another four to six years to complete the entire monument — Moore said the project is taking a serious toll on his body and that of his two artist assistants, his sons Todd and Ryan. But their efforts and sacrifices are not going unnoticed. Moore recently earned the Governor’s Arts Award in the Special Recognition category.
Moore took a break from sculpting and teaching to show me around his studio. Underneath all the clay is a humble family man working hard to pursue his passions.
For more information on Moore visit crownartsinc.com.
Q: How long is the process for creating a sculpture like this from beginning to end?
A: This project has been going for 13 years now. [motioning to one of the Oklahoma Centennial Land Run Monument pieces in his studio] But normally a big project — let’s say we did one of those sculptures — is a year and a half. The sculpting, we make the molds, and then from the molds we go in and take the mold to the foundry where the casting process begins.