Artist Clay Gant of Cross Timbers, Missouri, has a vision for his Cowboy Bronze sculptures, and that’s no where more apparent than in a very special series the artist created for the American Paint Horse Foundation, inspired by causes dear to his heart.
Designed as a tribute for therapeutic riding, Clay was inspired to chronicle the journey of a young girl working to get back in the saddle. The result was a limited series of five heart-warming sculptures that can be yours for a $1,000 donation per sculpture to the American Paint Horse Foundation’s Therapeutic Riding Instructor Certification Fund.
The first sculpture (left) starts with the beginning steps of a little girl attempting to swing a saddle pad onto her favorite horse—and the horse offers a bit of help. Titled “Unexpected Help,” the sculpture signifies the role the horse plays in therapeutic riding programs to produce a special bond with the rider.
Sculpture No. 2 (right) continues with the addition of a little boy and his dog. The boy sees that the girl needs help, which signifies the principle in therapeutic riding of helping without being asked. Both the boy and the girl can’t saddle the horse alone, but with help from the boy and his rope, the girl is able to push the saddle onto the horse. The dog plays with the horse, as often happens in real life. This bronze is titled “Where There’s a Will … There’s a Way.”
The third sculpture (left) depicts the horse with the saddle in place, with the children helping each other figure out how to secure it to the horse; it’s is “It’s a Cinch.” This bronze highlights that while things might seem hard in life, most tasks can be achieved with help.
The fourth bronze (below, right) shows “Will” helping the little girl mount the horse. The children are little, and the horse is tall—yet gentle. The name of this sculpture “Attainable Goals.” The unspoken bond between the horse “Precious” and dog “Lacie” is apparent. This bronze represents the principle that with determination, anything is possible.
The final bronze, which is still in production (pictured below) will conclude the series with the little girl and Precious riding away. Will and Lacie are side by side, and the little girl turns to face them to say “Thank you.” This bronze is titled “Back in the Saddle.” The foursome has come to know each other in a special way thanks to working together on their task.
These bronzes are limited in production to just 25 per model. With a donation of $1,000 to the APHF therapeutic riding instructor scholarship, you can own one of these special sculptures.
“We’re all in this together for those kids,” Clay said. “And that’s what this series is about. It’s a set of sculptures that tells a story.
For more information about the American Paint Horse Foundation and how to donate to the therapeutic riding instructor certification fund, go to apha.com/foundation/donate.
[Reprinting all or part of this news release is permitted, so long as credit is given to the Paint Horse Journal and a link provided back to apha.com.]
The American Paint Horse Association is the world’s second-largest international equine breed association, registering more than a million horses in 59 nations and territories since it was founded. APHA creates and maintains programs that increase the value of American Paint Horses and enriches members’ experiences with their horses.