Summit County Public Art

Metal Mulley

Cody Keetch's "Metal Mulley" is a composite of countless individual pieces of hand-hammered mild steel welded together to form a mounted trophy head of a giant buck. The deer's impressive antlers are smooth, rounded strips of metal, its body and head a patchwork of small steel squares. The nose is raised, as if it is sniffing the air as if a taxidermist rather than a welder had created a convincing case for the deer's vitality. Keetch says that the idea came to him after he found the gigantic shed antlers of a buck, and decided rather than having them mounted, to use them as inspiration for a sculpture.

Cody Keetch is a Coalville-based metal artist and custom metalworker who had been making metal art for about five years when he started "Metal Mulley," and welding for more than five before that. He comes from a lineage of welders--both his father and grandfather are professional welders. He took the family craft beyond its utilitarian function and started creating art. He bought a plasma cutter, which allowed him to essentially draw on sheet metal, creating custom wall sconces featuring moose, fire screens with elk, and detailed horses cut into coat racks. In addition, he used found objects and scrap metal from other jobs to create entirely new work, which is how the mule deer came about. "I worked on it off and on for one winter and would go and throw one or two pieces on here and there," he said. Eventually the piece took shape into the "monster buck" he imagined when he saw the shed antlers.

2013 Summit County Artscape People's Choice Award

Metal Mulley is visible from Main Street in front of City Hall.

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