Seth Low Junior High School will be cowless no more.
The yard in front of the Bensonhurst school will soon be getting a new bovine — all the way from Poland!
Principal Denise Levinsky confirmed Thursday that after word spread that someone had rustled up Seth Low’s painted life-size cow Sum NY, the group CowParade, organizers of the global wide public-arts initiative that their unofficial mascot was once part of, contacted them, offering to replace the missing statue.
It’s quite a gift, considering that the herd of pre-painted life-size cows available on their Web site run anywhere from $5,000 to $10,000.
CowParade committed to sending the school a blank, life-size cow and several “paint your own” cows — scale models that children can paint. Once everything is in place — which could take up to eight weeks — children can use the “paint your own” cows to sketch out submissions for big mama cow.
“We understand that [the cow] is on a boat en route from Poland,” Levinsky said, adding that the sister-in-law of one of the directors of CowParade saw a story of their plight on the Internet and told him about it. “Of course, we would like our old cow back, but this is a very nice gesture.”
Sum NY, who had been standing outside of the Avenue P school for 10 years, was taken from its grazing ground back in January. Whoever did it painstakingly unbolted the cow from its base and then carried the 98-pound piece of art for several yards before it could be lifted over a low gate.
The cow, Levinsky said, was welcomed by the community.
“We’re not being flippant when we say that grandmothers taking their children to Seth Low Park would walk across the street to look at it. Neighborhood children are crying because the cow is no longer there. It was part of the neighborhood.”
No one disputes that Sum NY was a peaceful soul. In fact, it had the word “peace” written in 17 different languages along its frame.
Sum NY was one of 500 original fiberglass cow casts painted over by artists and city students back in 2000. Like many of its brethren, Sum NY — which was originally adorned with a jigsaw puzzle of city landmarks — was on display in Manhattan for 10 weeks before the Seth Low PTA bought it. It was repainted with variations of the word “peace” in 2006.