Chainsaw carvings add to Newton art collection
If you’ve been to Maytag Park or driven past the Vernon Company lately, you’ve probably seen a large sculpture made from a tree trunk. These pieces of art are known as chainsaw carvings. They are usually made from standing tree trunks, which artists will sculpt into figures. Any tree will do, but a hard wood, like a large oak or walnut, works best.
Former Newton resident Gary Keenan makes a living carving figures out of tree trunks and has done a few of the carvings in town. He hadn’t had an art class since junior high, but that didn’t stop him from experimenting with chainsaw art 13 years ago.
Numerous examples of chainsaw carvings can be found around town: a flower on West 11th Street South, a corn cob on Highway 14 South, raccoons on South Eighth Avenue East, squirrels at Maytag Park, a cowboy at Love’s travel stop and the cardinal at the Vernon Company.
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