Dubbed as “Selfie Central,” a statue made from a lot of silverware took the big prize in this year’s SculptureWalk which means that piece will become a permanent Sioux Falls fixture.

“Bear Lee, Standing” is a 6-foot tall sculpture looks like a real-life bear that is primarily made from forks and knives. Even more impressive according to SculptureWalk’s Jeff Hanson is that the artist, Gary Hovey who hails from Ohio, is also battling Parkinson’s Disease.

“When you think of how he’s fighting that disease, but yet can weld all these forks together. I have no idea how many of them there are. His family gets great fun out of going to estate sales and rummage sales and finding forks.”

Hanson also mentions that the inspiration for Hovey’s creations is repurposed metal which goes through a deliberate process before it becomes art.

“He scours (shelterbelts) and fields to find the perfectly rusted metal. He cuts that into business card-size strips. He superheats it, takes a snip then twists each one of those strands into making that hide.”

According to Hanson, a rough estimate of how many forks were needed to make “Bear Lee, Standing” would number in the tens of thousands. The award-winning statute cost an estimated $12,000 and is located at 11th and Phillips in Downtown Sioux Falls.


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