Bilhenry Walker


October 19, 2019 - January 12, 2020

Opening Reception: Saturday, October 19, 2019, 5:00 - 7:00 pm; Gallery Talk by the Artist 6:00 pm

Bilhenry Walker of Eau Claire, Wisconsin, has been making fantastic sculptures for more than fifty years. He began making art in California, influenced heavily by his exposure to the work of Robert Irwin and Doug Wheeler. Irwin and Wheeler were at the forefront of artists using light, a movement that became known as Light and Space. Bilhenry’s earliest explorations of art and materials were wall-mounted sculptures made from sauna tubes. These sculptural paintings, or painted sculptures, are lit from the side so that the cast shadow becomes an important part of the visual experience. Throughout the 1970s, he continued to explore the impact of light by creating paintings on Plexiglas, in this case using light to make the painted surfaces appear to float away from the wall. In 1980, Bilhenry began creating cast sculptures using resin to make his works larger and thicker. Using the translucency of the resin, he would embed objects such as stones or other objects made from resin. These sculptures, often freestanding or suspended in the air, glow when lit and produce surprising and beautiful effects.


Artists of the Upper Midwest in the Permanent Collection



During its collecting history, the Sioux City Art Center has collected works by important artists from across the Upper Midwest, with the goal of serving as a repository of the region’s artistic production. This effort was expanded significantly over the last dozen years when a group of supporters began donating funds toward the purchase of artworks that is known as The Legacy Collection. Artworks in this exhibition include those from The Legacy Collection as well as many others by artists from throughout Iowa and nearby states.

The Elements of Art

Elements of Art



The elements of art are the basics of putting art materials together to create either a two- or three-dimensional work. Line, Shape, Form, Space, Color, Value, and Texture. Regardless of the subject of an artwork, the artist thinks about how the elements relate to one another as the art. Just as important, the artist’s use of the elements has a major impact on how we respond to the artwork. This exhibition of artworks from the permanent collection is intended as an introduction to many of the ways artists use the elements. After visiting this gallery, visitors are encouraged to think about how the elements of art are utilized in the artworks throughout the Art Center’s exhibition galleries.



Sioux City Artists in the Permanent Collection




During its more than 160 years as a city, Sioux City has been a place for serious business interests from the stockyards and meatpacking plants to technological, medical, and educational facilities. The arts, too, have played a vital role in the continuity of Sioux City’s success. The continual growth of local cultural institutions shows that as industrious as Sioux Cityans are, they understand the value of sustaining our cultural traditions. By melding individual creativity with the citywide desire for progress, the arts have been able to unite business, residential, and municipal goals in imaginative and accessible ways.

Behind this effort, of course, lies the artists themselves. This exhibition of works from the Art Center’s permanent collection brings together many artists who have at one time called Sioux City “home.” These artworks are in many ways the most important part of the Art Center’s mission of maintaining a collection of art for the people of Sioux City. We hope you enjoy this opportunity to view this beautiful part of Sioux City history.