By Michael Somerby EBS STAFF
BIG SKY – As part of their ongoing mission to “enrich our community through artistic experiences,” the Arts Council of Big Sky has yet again proven its effectiveness in bringing a wide breadth of styles and mediums to Big Sky.
In this specific instance, only a week apart, ACBS installed and unveiled two statues in Big Sky Town Center—one in the Big Sky Town Center Plaza near the newly-minted Blue Buddha Sushi Lounge and the other just north of Montana Supply at the entrance to Town Center.
The latter, aptly titled “Ram,” is a Jim Dolan piece made from steel. The sculpture, considered by ACBS Education and Outreach Director Megan Buecking to be the “grandfather of Big Sky public arts,” was housed at the River Rock Lodge for nearly three decades, receding from view in a stand of aspens that literally began to grow around its horns.
“We wanted to give him a new, more prominent location so he could be better enjoyed by Big Sky residents and visitors,” Buecking told EBS.
Dolan is among Montana’s most notable and prolific sculptures, and “Ram” is just one of three of his pieces in the ACBS’s public art offerings.
The Big Sky Town Center Plaza statue, titled “Continuity,” by Robert Winslow, is made from a slab of dark grey granite, smoothed to a shine in some areas and coarse in others.
As a permanent installation in Big Sky, Buecking says the piece adds to the diversity of the town’s Public Art Collection, deviating from the norm of representations of regional wildlife forged from metal.
“Continuity” boasts an abstract design, one that is non-representational, the first of its kind in the growing mountain hamlet. This was a big selling factor for ACBS, according to Buecking.
The sculpture will also serve as a central feature for a long-term goal of ACBS: forming a Public Art Trail in Big Sky, with pieces scattered between Town Center and Meadow Village and the trails in between.
“There’s just so much development going on it’s really important we make a plan for public art,” said ACBS Public Art Committee Chair Patty Rhea.
Head down to Town Center and indulge.