Summer plan: Work on outstretched arm, horse’s nose
Monique said the project list focuses on the outstretched left hand atop the horse’s mane, while bulldozing and blasting at the bottom of the horse’s head will continue to rough out the muzzle.
In scaling the mountain to sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski’s artistic plan, the mountain crew creates a series of horizontal work areas called “benches.” Spaced 20 feet apart, the “benches” form a network of access roads for the heavy equipment.
The area at the muzzle is the last of 11 “benches” created in rough shaping of the 219-foot-tall horse’s head since the carved Crazy Horse face was completed 15 years ago, in 1998.
“It is such a big project, it really is,” Memorial Chief Executive Officer Ruth Ziolkowski said. “There are places where we had to take 150 feet off the front of the mountain just to get back to the horse’s head. Now that we are at this point, I believe this year people are going to notice a decided difference.”
How long will it take to complete the carving?
“Korczak had no idea when he started and he was a lot smarter than I am, so I have decided not guess,” Ruth Ziolkowski said. “The important thing is that the work never stops, and it hasn’t since we started. That’s what we are interested in.”