Deep West Radio Documentaries
“We don’t pay our artists, we eat them!” So declares Whit Deschner, creator of the Great Salt Lick Contest. The artists he’s referring to are animals…cows, elk, deer, goats and others…who create their art by licking salt blocks left for them in fields and pastures. Listen.
|This is certainly one of the most unusual art contests and auctions in the nation, right in the middle of ranch country in eastern Oregon. For the past several years Whit's been distributing new salt blocks to ranchers who put them in fields where their livestock - and often, wildlife - sculpt away for weeks and months.||
|The ranchers then collect the “finished” sculptures and bring them to Whit who organizes an auction each September at a local gallery. Proceeds from the auction are donated to Oregon Health & Science University and its efforts to find to a cure for Parkinson’s Disease. Over the years more than $40,000 has been raised for the cause.|
See more entries from all years, and get more information about the Great Salt Lick contest at: www.whitdeschner.com/great-salt-lick-contest.html
This video is from the Western Folklife Center-produced 2010 Deep West Videos collection: read the full list of videos and filmmakers included in this DVD in our online gift catalog. All Deep West Videos are available in the Western Folklife Center Gift Shop. All photos in this article taken by Taki Telonidis.