Sunday, August 20, 2000

Pig Parade: Swine Lake

Ballet's pig pyramid kept artist on his toes FOR SUNDAY

By Owen Findsen
The Cincinnati Enquirer

[photo] | ZOOM |
        This is 113th in a series spotlighting pigs from the Big Pig Gig Public Art Project taking place in Cincinnati, Covington and Newport. Find past pig profiles and event details at

        The Cincinnati Ballet turned a simple pig project into a major production. Artist T.A. Boyle submitted one design for a ballet pig. “Then they called and said make it two, then they said make it three. Finally I had to figure out a way to create a pyramid of five Miss Piggies.”

        Artist: T.A. (Terry) Boyle, 43, Mack, partner in CAG Framing and Restoration. Mr. Boyle is also the creator of Andy Warhog (at Cincinnati Art Museum). Although he has been asked to do more, he says “I've had my fill of pigs.”

        Sponsor: Otto M. Budig Family Foundation, Harry and Linda Fath, Melody Sawyer Richardson, Richardson McKinney, Reba St. Clair, James and Vivian Schwab and Hi-Tech Printing Service Inc. for the Cincinnati Ballet.

        This pig's pen: Aronoff Center, Sixth and Walnut streets.

        You were inspired by: We had to give them all names, but they didn't like the ones I suggested, like Martha GraHam and Susan Farrow. We used two dancer's names from Swan Lake, Odile and Odette, and then made up the others, Hoofanova, Porkiskaya and Swine-Hilda.

        What's the matter? The pig pyramid was built by the Glass Hand, which did the tutus and created a metal armature to hold them all together. The two lower pigs are partially filled with concrete to stabilize them. Metal struts go through all the pigs and the two that are touching noses have a metal rod connecting their noses.

        Completing the project took: After the Glass Hand built it, I worked 12-hour days for three weeks finishing it.

        Your high on the hog was: Seeing it all together when it was installed. That was the first time I saw the whole thing.

        Pig peeve: Not being able to get all the pigs in my studio at one time. There was one in the paint booth, one in the studio, one on the elevator and two in storage in the basement.

        Best pig tale: Everybody who gets their picture taken with the pigs puts their hand on the nose of the middle pig. Every time I go out to see it, the nose gets filthier and filthier. I kind of like it that way. It is a pig after all.

        My favorite pork dish: I'd rather paint pigs than eat them.

        The materials cost: $2,500.


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