Visual Art

An Unlikely Exhibit: Local Volunteer Beautifies Airport and Courthouse

Lloyd Fleig displays local artists’ pieces in Eau Claire County Courthouse and Chippewa Valley Regional Airport

Carlee Shimek |

BRIGHTENING BUILDINGS. Photographer Lloyd Fleig is recruiting local artists to decorate courthouses and airports. (Submitted Photos)

Peruse the beauty of local artists’ masterpieces within the halls of Eau Claire’s courthouse and airport. Lining the walls of the Eau Claire County Courthouse and the Chippewa Valley Regional Airport are beautiful works of art, including photography to oil and acrylic paintings, most of it showcasing the natural beauty offered throughout the Eau Claire area.

“It’s really a neat opportunity for (the artists) to display their work so somebody else can see their work,” said Lloyd Fleig, the volunteer in charge of the two galleries. “You do it more for the joy of just having it displayed and having somebody else enjoy the art itself.”

These galleries began through the efforts of Fleig, a local photographer and retired purchasing and management expert. He’s explored photography as a hobby since he was 13 years old. 

Fleig co-founded the Chippewa Valley Photo Club with his friend Claude Schilling in 2009. He and Schilling were inspired while meandering through the airport to voluntarily display art in its hallways back in 2010. They contacted the airport director, Charity Zich, and soon enough, their photography was up and about within the airport walls.

"It’s about brightening people’s day," Fleig said. “Maybe they can see something that they would not normally see that’s reflective of the area.”

With the welcoming success of the airport art, Fleig was contacted in 2011 by Keith Zehms, the corporation counsel at the courthouse, who has since retired, about creating an art gallery for the county courthouse, 721 Oxford Ave. The then-recently remodeled jail section had blank walls, perfect for displaying the art of Eau Claire, and it expanded to the rest of the courthouse from there.

Fleig said the courthouse and airport are always looking for new artists’ work to display. He said the exhibits are a chance for folks to admire local art and maybe become inspired to explore their own creativity. There are about 25 artists featured in both the courthouse and airport, with some 150 different artworks displayed.

To ask about getting your own art displayed, contact Fleig at