Hillsborough Sculpture Tour
Cast your vote for the 2013 People's Choice Award. The winner will be announced at the end of the Tour.
Take a Closer Look at Hillsborough Sculptures
Do you enjoy sculpture and local art? If so, come out for one of the Hillsborough Arts Council's new "Take A Closer Look" guided walking tours of Hillsborough's sculpture. Tours will begin at the Hillsborough Arts Council Gallery, located at 102 N. Churton St. at 1 pm on Fridays and Saturdays through March 22. For more information please call 919-643-2500, email sculpture@HillsboroughArtsCouncil.org, or visit www.visithillsboroughnc.com. Tours last one to one and a half hours and are free, though donations are graciously accepted.
Six sculptures have been on display around the Town of Hillsborough since April 2013. This guided walking tour will give you the opportunity to take a closer look at four of them, perhaps discovering something you haven’t seen or thought of before. You will also learn about the artists and some background information about the sculptures. At the end of the tour you can vote for your favorite.
The Hillsborough Arts Council presents the Hillsborough Sculpture Tour 2013 from April 26, 2013 through March 2014. This is the second time outdoor sculpture has been exhibited throughout downtown Historic Hillsborough, North Carolina.
Hillsborough is a small town with a big history. The downtown historic district — listed on the National Register of Historic Places — features more than 100 homes, churches and buildings from the late 18th and 19th centuries. Today, Hillsborough is a tourist and permanent destination and a haven for artists and writers. The town is centrally located in North Carolina with fast access to the Triad and other Triangle cities. Interstate 85 runs through the town, and Interstate 40 is just outside its limits. See Hillsborough websites and for more about the town.
We were honored to have Patrick Dougherty as our Judge. Dougherty’s monumental-scale environmental works, which require saplings by the truckloads, evolved from combining his carpentry skills with his love of nature. Over the last 30 years, the Chapel Hill resident has built more than 230 of these works and become internationally acclaimed. His sculpture has been seen worldwide — from Scotland to Japan to Brussels and all over the United States. He also has received numerous awards, including a Japan-US Creative Arts Fellowship and National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship. In 2009, Princeton Architectural Press published “Stickwork,” a book about Dougherty and his work. View his natural material installations on his website.
Patrick Dougherty selected the six sculptures which have become part of Hillsborough’s landscape in the town’s second outdoor sculpture tour. “All the sculptures chosen this year were well crafted and smartly conceived,” Dougherty said. “It was a pleasure to review all the applicants. Unfortunately, the guidelines allowed me to choose only six this time.”
Winning sculptures are:
“Ark” by Charles Pilkey of Mint Hill
The welded steel sculpture is displayed at
Eagle Lodge Masonic Hall, 142 W. King St.
Pilkey, who grew up in Hillsborough, is a former geologist. He lived in Japan for 15 years, where he taught stone carving classes at Kyushu Sangyo University. His work can be seen in parks, museums and other public spaces in China, Italy, Japan, Korea, Turkey and the United States. He described Ark as a space ark “pointing toward the heavens to where someday we will, by choice or by necessity, journey to see other worlds.”
“Force of Nature: Figurative” by Susan Moffatt of Chapel Hill
The carved marble on a granite base is displayed at
the Town Hall Annex, 137 N. Churton St.
Moffatt is an award-winning sculptor and industrial designer who has studied marble carving in Carrara, Italy, and in Marble, Colo. Her sculptures have been selected for numerous juried exhibitions and have been awarded “Best in Show” and “Honorable Mention” at the N.C. Botanical Gardens sculpture exhibitions. She said she was inspired to carve “Force of Nature: Figurative” by a small yellow pepper she found in a market.
“I was attracted by the subtle, sensuous curves of the pepper, which brought to mind Edward Weston’s famous photographs of bell peppers,” Moffatt said. “In abstracting and amplifying the pepper in marble, I wanted to highlight the beauty and humanness of the form.”
"Gathering” by Michael Waller of Hillsborough
The painted woven steel sculpture is displayed at
the Hillsborough Visitors Center, 150 W. King St.
Waller has been creating sculptures for the private and public sector for more than 15 years. He received his bachelor of fine arts in sculpture from East Carolina and has worked as a professional blacksmith, foundry-man, mold-maker and instructor. He now serves as facility manager for Liberty Arts Non-profit Sculpture Studio and Foundry in Durham and is the co-owner of businesses WallerFoushee Studios and Carolina Shuckers. He works and lives in Hillsborough with his wife and daughter. “ ‘Gathering’ represents the significance of individual elements unified,” Waller said of his winning sculpture. “The ‘woven’ steel vessel pays homage to the traditions of the field, the family and the community.”
“Home Sweet Home” by Rudy Rudisill of Gastonia
The galvanized steel sculpture is displayed at
the Old Orange County Courthouse, located on the block of Churton Street that intersects with King Street and Margaret Lane.
Rudisill has been a working artist for more than 25 years. His fabricated sheet metal sculptures have won international awards and can be found in public, corporate and private collections in North America, Europe and Asia. In his work, Rudisill shows the illusion of change through galvanized steel and copper brushed with acid, which yields a corrosive effect. His work is both contemporary and traditional as well as industrial and pastoral.
“ ‘Home Sweet Home’ uses abstracted architectural form to explore the juxtaposition of interior and exterior space, mass and negative space in a fun, architectural, folly sort of way,” Rudisill said.
“Intrusion” by Harry McDaniel of Asheville
The aluminum and steel sculpture is displayed at
Turnip Patch Park, 333 W. King St.
As a child, McDaniel enjoyed creating and constructing, gradually moving from go-carts and firecracker-powered cannons to more aesthetically oriented projects. He began to take a serious interest in sculpting and painting in his mid-20s and was focusing on sculpture by age 30, learning mostly through experimentation. In recent years, McDaniel, who is in his 50s, has concentrated on outdoor sculptures in aluminum and steel and has been commissioned to create a dozen permanent works for public spaces from Maryland to Florida.
“ ‘Intrusion’ is an exploration of the interaction and energy created by pushing three large, irregular forms very close together,” McDaniel said of his winning piece. “The composition conveys a sense of tension
between the three sections. The graceful, curved lines and unbalanced, leaning forms suggest movement — perhaps a dance, perhaps a struggle. The matching curvature of the gaps between sections draws the viewer’s attention into those spaces. The middle section, differently finished from the other two, seems to be forcing its way between them, thus the title. While the sculpture might be interpreted as a social or geological intrusion, my intention was purely abstract.”
“Windows of Time” by Dale McEntire of Saluda
The steel and cast glass sculpture is displayed at
Burwell School Historic Site, 319 N. Churton St.
In addition to sculpture — using stone, steel, glass and bronze — McEntire produces oil and pastel paintings. The Western North Carolina native has been involved in visual arts since training at Mercer University, continuing private studies in the United States and Europe and training at Penland School of Craft. His interest is in the spiritual essence of nature, which can be seen in his use of color and form. He is represented by galleries in Western North Carolina and the Southeast and, for the past several years, has been selected to participate in public art events and outdoor sculpture shows. He is a member of Mountain Sculptors in Asheville and teaches painting at Isothermal Community College.
McEntire described his winning sculpture as representative of four cycles of life: birth, life on Earth, death, and the afterlife. Each glass sculpture is cast in the pate de verre method, a form of kiln casting that uses finely crushed glass mixed with a binding material and often colorants and enamels. “The overall design of the steel is in a geometric shape called a vesica piscis, which represents the overlapping of two circles,” the artist noted.
Each winner received an honorarium of $800. A People’s Choice Award will be announced at the end of the year long tour. The winning sculptures show a good variety again this year with a high level of artistry, noted Gail Cooley, coordinator and founder of the tour. “They combine a contemporary sensibility, but they’ll still be appropriate in a historic town,” she said.
The sculptures were placed around town a week before the tour’s opening, which coincided with the town’s first Last Fridays event of the year — an evening featuring arts in the downtown. Sites were chosen with walkability in mind and to showcase town, county and historic sites. “The sculpture committee did a thoughtful job of identifying prominent sites for this year’s tour in the downtown area,” said the judge, Dougherty. Helping him discuss the attributes of each available site were Cooley, the Sculpture Tour coordinator; Hillsborough Planner Stephanie Trueblood; and Dougherty’s associate, Dorothy Juhlin Bank. “In time, it became clear that a comfortable home could be found for each of this year’s winners,” he said.
About historic Hillsborough
Hillsborough, NC has been called a museum without walls, because its historic district is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and boasts more than 100 late 18th and early 19th Century structures.
The Old Orange County Courthouse, built in 1844, has been cited by the Library of Congress as one of the finest examples of Greek-Revival architecture in the United States.
Today, Hillsborough is a premier tourist destination and is home to numerous notable contemporary artists and writers. The historic district is a vibrant cultural center that includes fine restaurants, independent bookstores, fine art galleries, museums and numerous historic sites all within walking distance of the public sculpture sites.
Sites for Sculptures
All locations are within walking distance of downtown Historic Hillsborough. Selected sculptures are carefully sited to enhance the appearance and accessibility of the art and the site on which the art is located.
Locations included Historic Burwell School, Eagle Masonic Lodge, the Hillsborough Police Station, Turnip Patch Park, the Hillsborough Visitors Center, and the Orange County Historic Courthouse.
The Hillsborough Arts Council would like to thank all the members of the Sculpture Tour Committee and acknowledge the vision of Gail Cooley, the exhibitions founder and coordinator.
If you have questions or need any additional information: