Wyoming Arts Council

Artists selected for two new Art in Public Buildings projects


Commissions for artwork for the new Curt Gowdy State Park Visitor Center and the Health and Science Center at Central Wyoming College in Riverton, both Art in Public Buildings Projects, have been awarded to three artists.

The Curt Gowdy Visitor Center will feature artwork created by Gillette textile artist Joan Sowada and Pinedale’s David Klarén. The Health and Science Center at Central Wyoming College will house a glass frieze by Massachusetts artist Rufus Butler Seder.

“The Curt Gowdy project was a statewide call and we received 30 proposals from 21 Wyoming artists.” said Art in Public Buildings Project coordinator David L. Newell. “The proposals ran the gamut from traditional to contemporary, and the committee selected two concepts that really suit the lodge-style design of the center.”

Sowada is creating four quilted textile banners, incorporating imagery relating to the park, to hang above the information desk. Klarén is fabricating a series of cast iron fish silhouettes to be incorporated into the concrete sidewalks surrounding the facility and carved into the ceramic tiles of the Great Hall.

“David is bringing his fantastic graphic skills to the project and his interpretations of the fish species native to the park are amazing!” said Newell. “The selection committee was also extremely taken with a suite of iron fireplace appointments designed by artisan blacksmith David Osmundsen of Buffalo. A separate fundraising effort will be undertaken to secure the funds to purchase those pieces.” Newell added.

A national call was issued for the new Health and Science Center at Central Wyoming College. “We received 39 proposals from both Wyoming artists and artists outside the region. The building utilizes a soaring glass entryway and lobby space between the auditorium and classroom wings that served as the primary focus for installations, though the exterior plaza also received a lot of creative ideas.” continued Newell. “In the end, the committee selected a glass frieze that will knock people’s socks off. The piece utilizes optics to ‘animate’ its imagery and will morph from a single atom through a series of images, ending with the expanded galaxy. It will be amazing and perfect for a facility dealing with both health and natural sciences!”

Both the Curt Gowdy Visitor Center and the Health and Science Center at Central Wyoming College will open the summer of 2013.

The Wyoming Arts Council is responsible for the implementation of the one percent for Art in Public Buildings legislation for the State of Wyoming. By statute, artwork is commissioned as part of all new construction of state buildings with a cap of $100,000.

For additional information, contact David L. Newell, Curator of Art, Wyoming State Museum at 307-777-7677.

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