We welcome you to tour the Dr. James B. Congleton III Sculpture Collection on our New Bern Campus. Below are photos and descriptions of the artwork you will experience.
Click to download > Congleton Sculpture Walk Map.
If you plan on taking the sculpture walk on the weekends, park in our visitor lot and go to Student Center, or call 252-638-7261, to let security know of your presence.
1. & 16. BRUCE NIEMI
Bruce Niemi has been a professional sculptor for over 20 years, creating his first welded sculpture in 7th grade. Raised in Gurnee, IL, Niemi now lives in Kenosha, WI, and has public sculptures in museums and residences across the country including New Mexico, California, North Carolina, Illinois and Wisconsin. The sculptures Niemi creates are characterized by their positive nature, a reflection of his personality. His faith in God, the energy and grace of athletes, the balance and flow of dance, and the beauty and power of nature are his inspiration. His goal is to stimulate and exercise the mind of the viewer, as well as to create a sculpture that compliments the environment in which it resides.
Niemi works primarily in stainless steel and bronze, while occasionally using raw stone.
His work ranges in size from tabletop, wall sculptures, free-standing indoor and outdoor sculptures to monumental sculpture. He has placed 25 large scale public sculptures to date and is in numerous corporate and private collections.
2. CHRIS MORGAN
Before attending college, Chris Morgan moved to New York City where she studied classical ballet with The Joffrey Ballet School. At that time, her vision of success was not in becoming a “prima ballerina,” but rather in attaining a level of competence in dance such that the lines she created with her body were more consistent with “living sculpture.” It was the beauty of the line that was important. Five years after moving to New York City, Morgan had accomplished her technical and performance goals and was able to move forward with a formal education.
Morgan earned her undergraduate degree in chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a medical degree from East Carolina University School of Medicine, and was in private practice as an obstetrician/gynecologist for 14 years. A surgical injury to her dominant right hand ended her career as a physician, but allowed time for self-reflection. It was during this time that her interest in the arts was rekindled.
Although she mourned the loss of established patient relationships, Morgan focused on returning to a university to guide her through a new path in fine arts. Ultimately, her decision to work toward a fine arts degree was a healing one that allowed her to refocus her energies in a creative way with all of the excitement and anticipation of a new career. It was the university environment that encouraged Morgan to push beyond self-imposed limits, and allowed her to “grow into” painting and sculpture. She discovered that each concentration would contribute to her artwork, and, that experiences in medicine and classical ballet, gave her familiarity with, and reverence for, the female form that is unique among artists and pulls her toward the figurative realm. Morgan believes that art is not only an expression of who she is, but of the evolution of who she is becoming.
4. WALT HORTON
Walt Horton was born in 1949. He always had a way of making people smile, so it wasn’t a surprise when he chose cartooning as his first career. Horton attended the University of Colorado on a track scholarship in 1968, but his academic education wasn’t what prepared him for his life as an artist. His artistic abilities came naturally, and, with a lot of hard work, he developed an innate propensity to draw.
Horton was married in 1970 and had two very adventurous boys, Jesse and Benjamin. The boys were both born and raised in Bermuda. It was here that Horton’s cartooning matured and an advertising business specializing in humorous illustration became successful.
It wasn’t until Horton reached his mid-forties that sculpture entered his life and became his passion. He still made people smile, grin and laugh out loud, but with a different medium.
In November 2009, Walt and his wife opened the Walt Horton Fine Art Gallery in Beaver Creek, CO. Their gallery features many fine artists, but the emphasis has always been on Horton’s bronze work. Horton passed away on March 28, 2010. Although he is greatly missed, his art still remains and does the job Horton intended it to do – make the world a happier place.
5. WILLIAM TURNER
William Henry Turner was born on May 27, 1935, in rural Northampton County on Virginia’s eastern shore. Having spent many years in Belle Haven as a child, Turner returned to that area after World War II, and graduated from the University of Virginia in 1957 with a degree in anthropology. Turner then attended the Medical College of Virginia’s dental school. Graduating in 1969, he returned to his homeland. During this time his interest in painting and sculpture gradually led to his becoming a full-time sculptor. He works with his son, David, at Turner Sculpture, the largest private bronze foundry and gallery in the United States. Their works appear in hundreds of museums, universities, art galleries, businesses and fine homes throughout the nation and in several foreign countries.
6. DAVID FARRELL
David Farrell studied pottery in college and completed several apprenticeships with working potters near Seagrove, North Carolina before he co-founded his studio, Westmoore Pottery, in 1977. For over 30 years, Farrell and his wife have been making pottery and have found that the styles they like best are those used in the 17th, 18th and early 19th centuries. Farrell is known for producing quality, historically accurate work that is sought after by collectors nationwide. He is very interested in preserving a piece of the past and his “hands-on research” allows him to make pottery as it was made in North Carolina from 1755 to around 1850.
Westmoore Pottery produces several types of pottery: redware, both plain and decorated; salt-glazed stoneware; and green glazed wares. The pottery is made to be used and the goal is to achieve as close a look to old wares as possible without using a lead glaze. The pottery is not “aged,” but Farrell attempts to replicate the old pottery as it was when it was new, not as the somewhat worn antique it would be today.
Farrell’s work has been featured in over 120 museums and living history sites as well as a
number of historically based films. Both he and his wife have earned Early American Life magazine’s approval as among the best traditional craftsmen today. In 2010, they were presented with the Barringer Award of Excellence by the North Carolina Society of Historians in recognition of their work with historical pottery.
9. KENNETH “TRIPP” JARVIS
Kenneth “Tripp” Jarvis was born in Raleigh, NC and grew up in Holly Springs, NC. He earned his BFA and MFA from East Carolina University. In 1998 he moved to the country of Estonia in Eastern Europe where he attended the Estonian Academy of Art. There, he was an active artist participating in many international exhibitions and symposia in Estonia and Finland. Upon returning to the States he went on to teach ceramics and sculpture at Craven Community College in New Bern, NC. He has sculptures in many permanent collections including ECU, The Imperial Center in Rocky Mount, NC and Kohila, Estonia. Jarvis has participated in countless (many?) regional, national and international exhibitions in North Carolina, Washington DC and in Europe.
Jarvis’ work centers on the physical and spiritual worlds. I believe the heart is at the center of these two worlds. I see my sculptures as “Temple Heart Vessels”. It is my hope that my sculptures awaken the heart to the ever-unfolding blossom of the divinity residing in us all, which together we make up the garden of life.
10. ROGER HALLIGAN
Roger Halligan received his Master of Fine Arts degree with honors in Studio Arts from the University of Georgia in 1977. That same year he joined the newly formed Exhibit Design Department at the North Carolina Zoological Park where he was involved in the design and construction of natural habitat exhibits for the park. Halligan was instrumental in the development of techniques used in its construction of hard scape features such as faux rocks, waterfalls and faux trees. In 1993, he was awarded the State of North Carolina Governor’s Award for Excellence for his work in the design and construction of the Sonora Desert Exhibit. He left the zoo in 1992 to devote his time to his fine art.
Halligan has exhibited in numerous individual and group exhibitions in the United States and abroad and has won numerous awards and commissions. His sculpture is in many public collections throughout the State of North Carolina including the cities of Carrboro and Raleigh, the North Carolina Center for the Advancement of Teaching, Weatherspoon Museum at UNC-Greensboro, the Center for Craft Creativity and Design and the North Carolina Zoological Park where he was chosen as Artist in Residence in 1997. His work is also featured at the Maitland Fine Arts Center, Maitland, FL.
Halligan is a founding member and past president of the Tri State Sculptors Educational
Association, Inc. In 2006, he was awarded a Chattanooga Arts Move Grant to relocate his studio to Chattanooga, TN.
11. DEE CLEMENTS
Although his early sculpture was abstract in focus, Dee Clements was drawn to the beauty of bronze figurative sculpture. When he created his first sculpture out of clay, he found his passion.
Since that first sculpture, a main thread in his life has been to portray the content of a person, to capture through the face and figure the spiritual essence of the individual. The memories and imagery of the Great Plains – its sense of freedom as a youth, its sense of community, its people – have been a source of inspiration over the years. In creating a bronze monument, not only is the form and design a key to the successful work, but also the attention to every detail in this unforgiving style of representational sculpture.
Since 1984, Clements has been commissioned by municipalities, corporations, and private citizens to create over twenty unique pieces.
13. BRUCE GARNER
Canadian artist Bruce Garner’s much-loved sculptures can be found in many locations throughout the City of Ottawa, having been commissioned by multiple developers, all levels of government, churches, synagogues and art galleries. Born in Toronto, Garner studied at the Ontario College of Art and the University of Alberta. He worked as a graphic designer for numerous companies in Toronto and Vancouver before moving to Edmonton where he became creative director at an advertising firm. In 1966, he became a founding member of the Academy Six, a group of artists who organized several exhibitions in Edmonton. Garner then moved to Ottawa where he became graphic design chief for the Department of Trade and Commerce.
In 1965, Garner began sculpting part-time with the hopes of becoming a full-time sculptor within twenty years. Five years later, he left his job and began sculpting for a living. He developed a distinctive “hammer form” technique for shaping metal and has since received major public art commissions each year. Garner has also received a number of private commissions, including some from the ambassadors of Norway, Italy and the Netherlands. The artist’s goal is to add what he calls “texture” to the lives of the public, by adding a touch of interest or surprise to a site. Working primarily in metal and stone, his sculptures are uplifting monuments to action, physicality and life.
14. MARK BLUMENSTEIN
Beginning in 1973 and continuing through this day, Mark Blumenstein has always worked to recycle materials into objects that are kinetic and work with the elements. Much of this work requires the use of heat and force, while learning to use the tools that will withstand these elements and assist in the creation of the final statement of each work. He started using old farm machinery and springs, parts of old wood burning stoves and bicycles. His work has evolved to converting old silver pieces into whimsical tabletop art works. Blumenstein was inspired by a commissioning of 30 pieces by the Greenbrier Resort for a restaurant they were planning.
Blumenstein continues to be active in using both mediums and enjoys discovering the hidden magic that comes from working with the blue flame and heated metals.
15. RAY KOBALD
Ray Kobald is a nationally-known American sculptor who lives and works in St. Charles, IL. His works all suggest a story and an invitation to explore a mystery.
Born in Chicago in 1931, Kobald moved to St. Charles with his family when he was just 18 months old. In his youth, he developed an interest in the American west and, in particular, Native American culture and tradition. Many of Kobald’s paintings, sculptures, and executions in mixed media reflect this interest.
With a Native American influence, Ray’s seven-foot tall fisherman sculpture, entitled “From the Waters Comes My Bounty,” won the Bronze Foundry/Field Project sculpture competition. It was crafted for placement at the dam in Oregon, IL, across from the famed statue of Blackhawk by Lorado Taft.
Kobald has been teaching, sharing, and inspiring generations through his art. In addition to
sculpture, he is a master craftsman in woodwork, designing and making furniture. His friend and Fellow artist, Stan Jorstad, describes Kobald’s work. “Through his many and diverse public installations and exhibits, the viewer is provoked into thought. If the piece is of a historically significant character, the reality of expression, hand positioning, and body language, all help to tell the story of the individual. It is proven that learning is more effective when we are visually stimulated. His life-size bronze sculptures are powerful. No matter the subject, the work cannot be ignored. It stirs thought, can go deep into your soul, nudging our sub-conscious.”
Kobald’s works can be found in galleries and public displays throughout the western United States, and in both private and public collections.
17. TROY PILLOW
For over a decade, Troy Pillow has been creating unique sculptures that capture the attention
and the imagination through simple design and kinetic movement. His sculptures
interpret nature’s genius, a balance of complex function and simplistic beauty.
Inspired by organic forms and sacred geometry, Pillow’s pieces are multi-layered and deconstructed. The underlying mathematical language can be broken down into numerical sequences that, when charted, create symbols that echo their surroundings and streamline harmoniously into human consciousness.
Pillow incorporates metals and glass into his sculptures and refines them into elegant curves, giving the feeling of movement in their static rest. His pieces create a union of ease between modem design and nature, blending fluidly with their environment and elements. The feeling is heightened by kinetic factors that accentuate the shared effects of the environment, as both sculpture and viewer react to the same force.
Pillow lives and works in his studio in Seattle, WA. He studied architectural engineering at the University of Colorado and has enjoyed working with a wide variety of clients, including
government public art programs, private developers, and individuals. He utilizes computer design programs that interface with industry standards to allow him to communicate clearly and continuously from the conceptual stage to installation.
18. GINO MILES
Working in both monumental and small dimensions since the 1970s, sculptor Gino Miles is
inspired primarily by 20th Century European masters such as Moore, Brancusi, Archipenko, and Marini. He distills his love of the classical figure and objects found in nature, working
with a sparse and contemporary language that embodies tranquility. Stripped of an overt
narrative, Miles’ abstract forms achieve a poetic harmony of man and nature, with subtle references to both the human form and ancient cultures.
Miles became interested in painting and sculpture in the early 1970s at the University of Northern Colorado, where he also earned a Master of Arts in sculpture. He studied in Italy at Universita per i Stranieri in Perugia and the Accademia di Belli Art in Florence. A profound love of teaching inspired Miles to help establish ltalart, a school for American and German students in the Chianti region outside Florence. After many years of study and work in Europe, the artist and his wife returned to the United States and settled in Santa Fe, NM.
Miles’ large-scale works are prominently featured in many permanent and private collections
throughout the United States, Europe, and South America, including Spencer Museum at
University of Kansas, KS (20 13); Evansville Museum, IN; The Walt Disney Company Corporate Headquarters, Burbank, CA; the cities of Cerritos and Napa, CA; the City of Edmond, OK; and Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, KY, among others.
19. HARRIET WHITNEY FRISHMUTH
Harriet Whitney Frishmuth was born on September 17, 1880, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. A student of such renowned artists as Auguste Rodin and Gutzon Borglum, Frishmuth’s reputation and career grew steadily throughout the first several decades of the twentieth century, with exhibitions at the National Academy of Design, the Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia, the Salon in Paris, the Golden Gate International Exposition (1939-1940) and the National Association of Women Painters and Sculptors.
Her favorite models were dancers, especially Desha Delteil, a model particularly popular with artists for her ability to hold difficult poses for long periods of time. Frishmuth immortalized the dancer in her most famous work, The Vine. The final exhibits of Frishmuth’s work took place in New York City in 1929, but she remained active in the art world for many years following. Frishmuth passed away in 1980 at the age of 99.
A proponent of the Beaux Arts style – Frishmuth was exceptionally critical of modern art, often calling it “spiritless” – her works can now be seen in some of the world’s leading museums and collections, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, the Dallas Museum of Art, and Ohio University’s Kennedy Museum of Art