1975 | 36" x 48" x 16" | Bronze

Philadelphia Zoo, Philadelphia, PA

Eric Berg with Warthog (1976)

Eric Berg with Warthog (circa 1990)

Warthog (2023)

“I was lucky enough to get [the warthog commission] at the Philadelphia Zoo right out of graduate school. And that really gave me both a prestigious place to have a piece and it was a great break for getting into the profession.” - Eric Berg, 2015

The Warthog was Eric Berg's first public piece. It had been his dream to have a piece in the Philadelphia Zoo, so when he finished graduate school Berg approached the Philadelphia Zoo to see if they had enough money in their art budget for a sculpture. With a portfolio consisting entirely of stone carvings he met with the late Henry Mirick, a zoo architect at the time. Due to a swine flu, the Zoo was unable to acquire a live African Warthog, so they commissioned Eric Berg to sculpt one. This commission changed the course of Berg's career from stone carvings of geometric abstractions towards the bronze animals we know and love. Although his sculptures are mostly anatomically correct, Berg curved the Warthog's horns so the piece would be safer for children to climb.

Jesse Berg with Warthog (1976)

Erig Berg with Granddaugher (1999)

Eric Berg Sculpting Warthog (1975)

Warthog Maquette in Clay