The St. Louis Award Statue, Pine

Photo by Linda Ballard

Surrounded by a grove of living trees, the abstract sculpture Pine honors the recipients of the annual St. Louis Award. The award, which was established anonymously in 1931, honors “the resident of metropolitan St. Louis who, during the preceding year, has contributed the most outstanding service for its development” or “performed such service as to bring greatest honor to the community.” Institutions, as well as men and women, have been selected for the award over the past 80-plus years. In 1960, after the death of David P. Wohl, philanthropist and founder of Wohl Shoe Company, it was revealed that he was the founder and donor of the award. 

St. Louis artist Kent Addison sculpted Pine in 1965 on commission from the Wohl family. The 9-foot-tall work is cut and folded from Cor-Ten steel, a naturally rusting material. This was the first use of Cor-Ten for a public sculpture in St. Louis. A passer-by told the artist the day it was being installed that it was “rusting pretty badly” and that he should “put a coat of paint on it.”