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YAC Opens 2016 Yokna Sculpture Trail Call for Entry

Yokna Sculpture Trail logo Photos by Jeff McVay
Yokna Sculpture Trail logo
Photos by Jeff McVay

For locals that may be new to town and visitors that visit our community by the thousands on a yearly basis, the Yoknapatawpha Arts Council and other city entities would like them to know that there is a nationally recognized sculpture trail right in the heart of Oxford that features three outstanding sites for sculpture art.

According to its website (yoknasculpturetrail.com) the locally managed Yokna Sculpture Trail features a rotating exhibit of 18 large-scale sculptures designed by locally, regionally and nationally renowned exhibiting artists. The collaboration between the City of Oxford, The University of Mississippi and the Yoknapatawpha Arts Council is the first outdoor sculpture program of its kind in North Mississippi.

Three strategically chosen sites are featured on the trail: Powerhouse Sculpture Garden located at 413 South 14th Street; Meek Hall, West Terrace/Cross Street located in the center of the Ole Miss campus; and Pat Lamar Park located on Country Club Road just outside of Ole Miss.

YAC Director Wayne Andrews
YAC Director Wayne Andrews
According to YAC director Wayne Andrews, “The trail represents Oxford’s vibrant arts culture and the trail’s beautiful green spaces are at the heart of what makes our community great. It is our hope that this trail and these spaces for artwork will be a source of enjoyment for residents and visitors for years to come.”

The current mission of YAC is determining which artists and their work will be featured at the three sites for the next two years. With that in mind, YAC and other city entities have opened the call of entry for the 2016-18 version of the sculpture trail.

With 63 applications submitted from across the US for the 2015 trail that is about to end; it seems that the trail organizers will have their hands full in the next three months while choosing this year’s featured artists.

The deadline for entry is set for January 21 and the featured artists will be notified by email by February 18. Exhibition dates for the new trail are officially set for March 1, 2016 through April 1, 2018. A Yokna Sculpture Trail reception is also planned for the Double Decker Arts Festival this spring.

A sculpture that is part of the Yokna Sculpture Trail stands outside of the front entrance of the Powerhouse, YAC's headquarters
A sculpture that is part of the Yokna Sculpture trail stands outside of the front entrance of the Powerhouse, YAC’s headquarters
“Each year we rotate some of the artwork on the sculpture trail creating a changing public art exhibit,” Andrews said. “That practice helps keep the exhibit fresh, invites new artist to the community and allows us to connect students at the University with leading artists.”

Leadership Lafayette – a program associated with Oxford-Lafayette County Chamber of Commerce – reached out and received permission to publicize the call on CaFe; a network organization that aids artists with calls, application and entries such as these. The network, created by Western States Art Federation, is expected to give the Yokna Sculpture Trail additional national attention.

For more information on the call for entry, artists and interested readers are encouraged to visit www.callforentry.org.

Co-founders of the Yokna Sculpture Trail include Andrews, Earl Dismuke as the Resident Artist of the City of Oxford, and Durant Thompson who is Associate Professor of Sculpture at The University of Mississippi.

YAC and other city leaders would also like to thank the Rebel Sculpture Society and the Leadership Lafayette Class of 2015 Team Inspiren for their aid in promoting and organizing the popular trail.

For more information on the Yokna Sculpture Trail, visit www.yoknasculpturetrail.com or call YAC at 662-236-6429.

The sculpture 'Tango For You' stands outside of the entrance of the Powerhouse in Oxford
The sculpture ‘Tango For You’ stands outside of the entrance of the Powerhouse in Oxford

Jeff McVay is a staff writer and graphic designer for Hottytoddy.com. He can be reached at jeff.mcvay@hottytoddy.com.

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