Giddyap for the Sculpture Tour!

one-third of this year’s citywide collection of 3D artwork is from Wisconsin and Minnesota

Tom Giffey, photos by Andrea Paulseth

Tres Caballos by local artist Terry Meyer
Tres Caballos by local artist Terry Meyer

The Sculpture Tour Eau Claire is now more “Eau Claire-y” – or at least more “Chippewa Valley-y” – than ever. The latest crop of sculptures was installed around the city earlier this month, and it includes more works by local and region artists than ever before. In fact, fully one-third of the 36 sculptures in the 2017-18 edition of the tour were created by people from Wisconsin and Minnesota, said Julie Pangallo, the tour’s executive director. “When it started, everything came from the Partners Network in Sioux Falls (South Dakota),” Pangallo said, referring to the sculpture-lending arrangement that connects cities with similar sculpture tours. “This is a big jump this year. We’d like to keep it at least a third.” Regional artists include Terry Meyer and Dean Gelzner of Eau Claire, Dean Antilla of Pepin, Duane Grimme of Menomonie, and Crysten Nesseth of Cameron. One of the most notable sculptures is by a Chippewa Valley artist: Meyer, perhaps best known for sizable oil paintings of horses, created a massive sculpture of a trio of equines. You’ll find that work, “Tres Caballos,” across North Barstow Street from the entrance to Phoenix Park. Among Pangallo’s other favorites are “Slow As You Go,” a sloth sculpture by Dale Lewis near Acoustic Café on South Barstow Street, and “SunRiser,” a graceful human figure by Bobbie Carlyle in front of Mona Lisa’s Restaurant on Water Street. The sculptures may be in place already, but more installations will follow this summer. Because of several acts of vandalism and theft impacting the tour in recent years, Pangallo said more surveillance cameras will be put in place to keep an eye on the artwork.

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