Colorado-based low relief sculptor J.D. (Jeremiah) Welsh spent much of the past year working in secret. The award-winning member of the National Sculpture Society (NSS) is no stranger to producing complex works on tight deadlines, but he poured many months and 23 years’ worth of skill into one special, small object: the Brookgreen Medal.
“I honestly never thought I’d have the chance to do it,” Welsh says of the medal, which honors the prestigious Brookgreen Gardens sculpture garden in South Carolina and is presented to artists who ear the Anna Huntington Hyatt Award at the NSS’ annual awards exhibition. It also is included in the collections of the American Numismatic Society, the Smithsonian Institution, and the British Museum.
“This is the 50th anniversary medal, and the fact that only 50 people have been invited [to create it] makes it hard to believe it happened to me,” Welsh says. “I felt incredibly honored.”
German Shorthaired Pointer and Ruffed Grouse
6″ by 6″
“The alertness and eager energy that typifies German Shorthaired Pointers was very much on my mind when I sat down to sculpt this piece. I cared for a German Shorthair briefly, and I have spent a fair bit of time around them in both homes and fields. Their physicality and beauty is truly remarkable, and their drive is almost boundless.”
15.5″ by 13.75″
“The stoical nature of cattle has always fascinated me. I grew up around them on our family farm and came to appreciate their power, tempers, and remarkable gentleness. How often I have seen a cow or bull startled from its quiet routine into a moment of sudden watchfulness. Despite domestication, this moment underscores something more elemental—something left of what is wild and wonderful in these roaming creatures. That, then, is the root of what I sought to convey in this sculpture—a pause of poignant eye contact, stillness, and assessment.”