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The Yankee Express

Slater’s Sheep Art Project seeks to engage community with new Webster Museum

May 26, 2021 04:58PM ● By Chuck Tashjian

Local artist Dave Laabs has begun painting a Slater Sheep. When finished it will be displayed at a Webster location.

Artists and sponsors invited to participate
WEBSTER -- Two hundred years ago, Samuel Slater, now known as the Father of the American Industrial Revolution, built textile mill complexes along the French River and Webster Lake, including one of the country’s first woolen mills. Everyone in Webster and surrounding towns knew the Slater name; that is no longer the case.
Later this summer the Samuel Slater Experience, which recreates Samuel Slater’s life and innovative contributions to textile manufacturing, will open in the former National Guard Armory on Ray Street in Webster. 
Leading up to a grand opening of the new museum is the Slater’s Sheep community art project, which will reintroduce Samuel Slater to the area’s residents in a highly visible, fun way, tying it to his woolen and cotton mills.  
The museum has acquired 25 life-sized sheep sculptures and is inviting the community to become involved in this pre-opening campaign by decorating the sheep with creative images and naming them. 
Local businesses, organizations, civic associations, individuals, and families can support the project as sponsors. 
The uniquely painted sheep will be displayed at various locations in Webster and surrounding towns, in sponsors’ locations and in public spaces.   
Call for Artists
Can you decorate a life-sized sheep with a creative image? Local artists and school art classes can apply to be on the list of artists that will be provided to sponsors. For details and requirements, contact Barbara Van Reed at [email protected] or call 508-243-6392. Artists will have six weeks to complete the painting and will receive a stipend for time and cost of materials.     
Call for Sponsors
Members of the community, businesses, organizations, and individuals are invited to contribute to the Slater’s Sheep art project as sponsors. Each sheep will have a recognition plaque that gives both the name of the artist and the sponsor. For details, email Connie Gallant at [email protected] or call 508-243-2543.
The sheep can be displayed at your business location or at another location of your choosing.
Additional Information 
For more information about the Samuel Slater Experience, visit