10:19 am
Tue September 27, 2011

Into It: Butter Sculptures

Caroline Brooks, an early butter sculptor, at the 1893 Columbian Exposition.

As you wound your way through the Kansas State Fair this year, perhaps you stumbled upon this surreal scene: standing in front of a refrigerated case, a group of wide-eyed Mennonite girls stare at 700 pounds of salted butter that has been reformed into a wild scene of two monkeys riding the backs of bucking sheep. Butter sculptures like this one, best known their pastoral or quirky representations, have surprisingly privileged origins.

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