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New Sign Helps Tell Totem Pole's Tale

totem sign designed and carved in 1990A new sign near the Redwood Campus totem pole identifies the 24-foot-tall sculpture as the work of pioneering chain saw artist Don Colp.

Frequently misidentified as Native American artwork, the sculpture's history had been largely forgotten over the years. Many people on campus didn't even know it was there, tucked away in a forested area near the Josephine Building.

A little digging by a student last spring revealed the sculpture was carved by performance artist Don Colp during a 1990 event on campus. New this fall, a sign funded by a mini-grant from the Josephine County Cultural Coalition recognizes the "grandfather of chain saw carving" as the artist who created the piece. The coalition aims to encourage participation in the arts, heritage, humanities and culture.

For more about the totem pole, visit the Rogue Community blog,