In working with glass we have the opportunity to manifest the human spirit and wonder and curiosity of life.
-Rich Arentzen and Tove Ohlander, AO Glass
Rich Arentzenand Tove Ohlander certainly pique our curiosity and wonder in this glass sculpture of the famed Lake Champlain sea monster, Champ. Mythologized by the Native American Abenaki and Iroquois tribes, Champ has captured the hearts and imaginations of generations of Lake Champlain residents.
Sameul de Champlain, the lake’s namesake, wrote about his encounter with the creature in his journal from 1609. Having seen only five feet of it, he described it as being “as big as my thigh, and [having] a head as large as my two fists, with a snout two feet and a half long, and a double row of very sharp, dangerous teeth.” In the nineteenth century, P. T. Barnum offered a $50,000 reward for anyone able to catch it. Interest in Champ has persisted, and the New York Times ran two articles in the summer of 1981 about sightings and investigations into its existance. Additionally, in 1982, Vermont passed a House Resolution protecting Champ. New York followed suit the following year.
In this sculpture, Arentzen and Ohlander portray the whimsical side of Champ as they display its inquisitive head sneaking a peak at onlookers. Furthermore, the smooth lines of its rotund body lend a comical air to this mysterious animal.
This sculpture of Champ measures 6 inches long, 2 inches wide, and 4 inches tall.