Anger and dismay are just two of the words Cody Bisignano uses to describe her emotions over the loss of her Gallopin’ Around Saugerties art horse “Endor,” which was beheaded by a man who was arrested and charged with being drunk.
The drunken decapitation of “Endor,” located outside the Dutch Tavern on Main Street, led on September 5 to the arrest of siblings Judah J. Signor, 28, of Greenville, N.C. and Deborah A. Signor of Brooklyn. The two were arraigned in the Saugerties village court, and both were sent to Ulster County Jail.
Bisignano, a 1996 graduate of Saugerties High School, learned in a text from her sister Chelsea that “Endor” had been beheaded. This summer, her art horse “Wonka” had been damaged when someone punched it in the chest
“I was at work down in Kerhonkson,” Cody explained, “when I received a text from Chelsea saying my horse, Endor, had its head ripped off, and that the police had it as evidence.”
Cody, owner of Fernrock, her horse training business, said she spent about 150 hours over the course of three months working on Endor, a project that included cutting off one leg to reposition it to make it look more lifelike, removing the horse’s jaw and repositioning it.
“I reconstructed almost the entire horse to make it look more real,” Cody added. Rather than just painting it, as many other artists did, she had added molded pieces to the outside to make it look more like a mythological war horse.
“I’ve always been interested in mythology and horses,” Cody said. “When I was young I told my parents I was going to be a horse trainer when I grew up. When I was in school during lunch hour I was always with my sketch pad, drawing mythological beasts …. And now I have my own business.”
This was not the first art horse that Cody has done. In 2010, she designed a carousel horse for a chamber [of commerce] fundraiser, she said. “I always wanted to do another horse, and when this year’s project came up I jumped at the chance.”
Right now the police are holding the headless horse for evidence for the trial. Cody said she’s not entirely sure what she will do with it when she gets it back, but she knows that it will be assembled as some kind of a horse. “It’s a work of love that needs to be restored or made into another horse.”