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UW-Madison's 2019 senior class gift a sculpture from School of Education alum Reed

May 13, 2019

UW-Madison’s 2019 senior class unveiled its class gift on May 6 — a sculpture, called “The Monarch,” that celebrates the 150th anniversary of women earning undergraduate degrees at UW–Madison.

Reed's Monarch sculptureThe sculpture was created by Victoria Reed, who earned her master of fine arts degree from the School of Education’s Art Department in 2016. This gift was made possible with support from the 4W Initiative (Women, Well-being, Wisconsin and the World), the UW Foundation, and the Wisconsin Union.

Reed made the sculpture with fabricated steel. In this piece, and in all of her metalwork, she takes inspiration from craft-based design and, with this in mind, includes patterns to add layers of meaning. For “The Monarch,” Reed incorporated patterns based on crochet.

“I hope to convey a sense of strength in this work, to portray a woman of power and dignity through the female form, while simultaneously removing sexuality as a defining characteristic,” Reed said. “She is more than her biology, untethered and ethereal, but human still. Deceptively delicate, but made of steel, immobile, persistent and strong."

The sculpture is available for viewing in the Memorial Union’s Hamel Family Browsing Library.

The class will also make a gift to the In Her Honor Chancellor’s Fund. This fund supports campus programs that aim to promote gender equity, make life better for women, and make the world better for all.