LEXINGTON, Ky. - Perfect timing. A day after winning the NCAA men’s basketball tournament, a larger-than-life bronze wildcat sculpture was installed at the University of Kentucky campus.
“It takes into some attributes that were considered important by the university and the alumni, specifically sort of a grace and cunningness, and an intelligence in its appearance, but also that they wanted it sort of in motion,” says artist Matthew Palmer.
The UK Alumni Association commissioned and paid for the sculpture. It’s not the first mascot that artist Matthew Palmer has designed for a university, but after witnessing the excitement of the basketball team’s title victory, the Washington native says he’s a fan.
“It’s a tremendous honor and of course last night when I was feeling the energy and the enthusiasm of all those people, it really brought it home just the significance of it.”
The nearly 8-foot-tall wildcat sits across from Memorial Coliseum. A public unveiling and dedication ceremony is scheduled for April 20.