Friday, September 22, 2000

Pig Parade: Hamlite

Let us reflect on this flashing pig

By Owen Findsen
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        This is 146th in a series spotlighting pigs from the Big Pig Gig Public Art Project taking place in Cincinnati, Covington and Newport. Find past pig profiles at

        This is the pig that's bright at night. He's covered with reflectors so he's a drive-by flasher.

[photo] | ZOOM |
        Artist: Margaret Wenstrup, New Richmond. Ms. Wenstrup is a painter of abstracts, including one painting inspired by the pig.

        Sponsor: Donna Schiff.

        This pig's pen: Cincinnati Museum Center.

        You were inspired by: The minute I saw the pose standing on its hind feet I thought of a clown. I thought it would be funny to make it as bright as I could. Then I thought of the reflectors so he would be bright at night.

        What's the pig idea? We call him Hamlite because of the reflectors. He's got a WalMart soup bowl on his head, with an orange shower scrubber on it. He's got striped sleeves and socks and he's holding one of those twirling lawn ornaments that looks like a flower. He has red rope for hair.

        You want people to look at this pig and think: There's nothing very serious about it.

        Completing the project took: Two months.

        What's the matter?: Orange paint, reflectors. The polka-dot cloth on the collar, sleeves and legs is fabric from a flag store.

        Your high on the hog was: While I was repainting him, some guy came and made a film of me. He said he had made a film of Connie Chung and now he was doing one of me. He told me I was real good.

        Pig peeve: The first time I painted him some parts had black spots. Then I got a bad kind of paint that faded, so my husband and I went down and repainted him on the spot. Now he's real bright orange.

        Best pig tale: People have been so nice to him. They've taken his flower several times but that's nothing. When we were painting him people came up and asked us what we were doing. They were afraid we were hurting him.

        The materials cost: Finally they got tired of me at the paint store and gave me some paint. I guess about $300. Now I've got so much paint left over that I did a painting with it. I even put reflectors on the painting.

        If your pig starred in a movie, who would you cast to play the role? Bette Midler, that's really him. I mean he's her.


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Get to it
- Pig Parade: Hamlite
Tristate A.M. Report