33rd Annual Sculpture Celebration in the Mountains

downtown art walk Lenoir

Hardly seems possible that we’d be looking towards September during these leisurely days of summer, but when the 33rd Annual Sculpture Celebration is coming to the mountains, it’s hard not to flip those calendar pages in anticipation.  The mountain towns in North Carolina are bursting with culture and talented folks who not only maintain the region’s rich history but also keep it contemporary and full of life.  The art community is one more reason to explore Caldwell County real estate when you’re considering where to purchase your next home.

September 8, 2018, from 9-4pm, the Caldwell Arts Council will be throwing a popular event—with over 70-plus sculptors, and 200-plus sculptures; live music will add to the air of festivity, and of course plenty of delicious food served up fresh from vendors.  For those with artistic leanings, $11,000 cash awards await you.  If you plan on bringing little ones, there are plenty of art activities for children, as well as free shuttles to convenient parking.  Best of all, it’s free entry to the Broyhill Walking Park at 945 Lakewood Cr, Lenoir NC.

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS:

Friday, September 7:

10 am-7 pm: Park opens for pre-registered sculptors, on-site registration, site selection & setup; crane available for unloading large sculptures (this needs to be pre-arranged so please use early registration). We will NOT begin check-in until 10 am

7 pm:  Sculptors Welcome Dinner

8 pm:  Introductions, Judge’s presentation

Saturday, September 8:

7-8:45 am: Park opens for on-site registration, site selection & set-up. Only small trucks allowed in park & must be removed by 8:45am; Continental breakfast available free for sculptors

9 am:   Exhibition opens; judging begins for awards

10 am-3 pm:  Live Music in the park; food vendors and children’s art activities

3:15 pm:   All sculptors come to the awards presentation area (main deck)

3:30 pm:  Awards presentation followed by Judge’s walking tour/talk about winning sculptures

4 pm:  Exhibition closes; begin to remove sculptures from the park; crane available for loading (must be pre-registered for this assistance)

ADULT CATEGORY AWARDS ($11,000 TOTAL!):

$3,000 Best in Show

$2,000 First Place Award

$1,500 Second Place Award

$1,000 Third Place Award

$500 Judge’s Merit Awards (5 TOTAL)

$100 Honorable Mention Awards (5 TOTAL)

$500 Stevens Family People’s Choice Award (professional category)

AND a separate Youth Category People’s Choice Award

YOUTH CATEGORY AWARD:

Separate Youth Category People’s Choice Award & other youth awards

REGISTRATION FEES (Register early for best savings-Registration by cc/debit/PayPal):

Youth/School Registration through September 6 is $35

University Sculpture Student and local schools Registration through September 6 is $35

Early Registration through July 1, $50

Early Registration July 2-31, $60

Early Registration August 1-September 6, $70

On-site Registration September 7-8 is $80

Welcome Dinner – Free to registered sculptors; guests are $20 in advance, $25 onsite; Sculptors, Judge, sponsors and guests gather for a casual buffet dinner and live music, followed by the Judge’s presentation. Talk about your work, meet our sponsors, and make friends in this party-like atmosphere. This event is included free with your registration; additional guests meals are $20/person in advance or $25/person on site. Dinner includes meat and vegetarian options, fruits & vegetables, salad, bread, sweet/unsweet tea, beer & wine (if allowed at location) and a variety of desserts.  For more information call:  828-754-2486 or email info@caldwellarts.com

Lenoir’s downtown art walk draws many people from the mountain towns in North Carolina.  Did you know that Lenoir has more public sculpture per capita in the U.S. than any other community of its size? The historic architecture of Lenoir is both charming and inspiring to those who want to gather aged metals for their sculptures, and the versatile display of talent in every conceivable medium makes for a great outing.  There’s something for everyone–from traditional to contemporary–to browse or select to bring home after you’ve found the idyllic Caldwell County real estate.  And for those who adore meandering through the downtown art walk, twelve planters are installed with steel bases to mount original creative work.  No wonder The Charlotte Observer deemed Lenoir the place “where sculpture reigns.” 

Since America’s bicentennial, the Caldwell Arts Council has been promoting and presenting high quality arts. Four gallery spaces and an artisan craft gift shop are bursting with vibrant art, paintings, pottery, and more, in a historic building; for anyone interested in the downtown art walk the CAC is not to be missed.  The exhibits change monthly so frequent trips for art enthusiasts is a must.  The mission of the CAC is “To establish and maintain an awareness and appreciation of cultural arts…encourage participation in arts events, and offer various educational opportunities and administrative services in support of artists, arts agencies, and audiences.”  The CAC also offers an artist-in-schools program, bringing theater, dance, and music to children in the region.

Caldwell Country real estate is graced by the amazing cultural heritage in the area.  There is a permanent collection of 83 sculptures throughout the county and most are outside so they can be viewed anytime.  People travel far and wide to visit Tucker’s Gallery, which was begun by two Caldwell Country artists, Keith Willis and Suzette Bradshaw.  The gallery is named after a family who settled in Lenoir in 1797, another slice of local history. If you are one of the lucky artists to have your work displayed at Tucker’s Gallery, your work will remain for an entire year or until your piece finds the perfect home.

Be sure to visit the permanent sculpture collection in Lenoir.  There’s so much to see!  Just a few inspiring works as there are too many to mention—Pig, by Glen Gardner (a contemporary weather vane), Golden Throat, by David Humphrey, Rusty Reader, by James Consoli, Amarylis Archecturalis, by Vega Metals, Steel Horse, by Richard Sinclair, Three Graces, by Robert Jarrel in marble (classic Greek influence), Tell the Ocean I Said Hi, by Richard Walters in marble, and the figurative Girl in Green, Rodney Shaw in clay. Of course international artist Thomas Sayre’s large sculpture is a piece that has received nonstop raves. According to the CAC’s website, “The final piece resembles a circular hole saw and is called Across the Grain.  Sayre derives its name from many places, both from Lenoir’s treasured past and its anticipated future.”

Make sure you visit The Coves Mountain River Club when you visit the mountain towns in North Carolina.  There’s no other close-knit gated community like ours, surrounded by the simple beauty of the foothills but still close to the cultural heartbeat of the state. 

If you’re exploring the area for the first time, ask for our 84 page complimentary Western North Carolina Visitor’s Guide which provides more information about living in the foothills.

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