Our Pledge To You

News

Bye-bye, deer: Giant sculpture removed from Chicago Riverwalk

The "deer" sculpture that was installed in June 2017 along the Chicago Riverwalk has been removed and will be returned to an Arkansas museum. | Mitch Dudek/Sun-Times

Oh, deer.

The giant deer statue along the southern banks of the Chicago River at Wolf Point — that watched over joggers and tour boats alike — is gone.

All that remains, as of Monday, are four lonely concrete slabs where its hoofs once stood.

Don’t be sad. It turns out the deer will have a new home in the woods, literally.

It will be placed in a sculpture forest on the grounds of the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas.

“Deer” by artist Tony Tasset, made of fiberglass, epoxy and paint, was removed from the Riverwalk near Wolf Point. | Rich Hein/Sun-Times

The deer has been on loan from the museum since June and, as scheduled, has been called home.

It will again be on display in late December. The museum is roughly a 10-hour drive from Chicago.

What, if anything, will replace the deer along the stretch of grass next to Wacker Drive near Wolf Point is unclear.

Hopefully something. The bit of riverfront has been criticized for appearing to be an afterthought in an otherwise grand Riverwalk plan.

No word yet from the folks at the city’s Department of Cultural Affairs, who are in charge of such things.

Chicago artist and University of Illinois at Chicago professor Tony Tasset, who created the deer, could not be reached for comment.