"The Drummer", Robert Hess

The Drummer was gifted to the City’s of Salem’s public art collection by the architectural firm, Smith, Settecase and Doss. The work was initially shown at the Salem Public Library but was later moved to the Salem Convention Center and included in OASF’s 5th annual exhibition, “Sculpture Now.” 

Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Hess earned a BFA in sculpture at Indiana University in 1970 and an MFA at Notre Dame in 1972. He was hired by Willamette University in 1972 to teach classes in sculpture and design and was a member of the Art Department faculty for 34 years.

According to Willamette, Hess' wood carvings and his cast and welded figures and abstractions won many awards and brought him recognition as a major sculptor in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest. In addition to periodic exhibitions at Hallie Ford Museum of Art over the course of his career, a number of his works have become a part of the university's art collection, including Dixieland in Rogers Rehearsal Hall, Chutzpah in the M. Lee Pelton Theatre lobby and several others.