Local News

First outdoor sculpture arrives in Sebring

SEBRING - More than a decade ago, artist and sculptor Adam Walls began creating art in the form of tanks.

Monday, one of the tanks -- modified to have a small tank attached to the body of the larger one -- was delivered to Rotary Park in Sebring.

The piece of art, called "Father and Son," was changed, largely to fit Walls' changing outlook on his life.

"It (adding the small tank) was because I want to create a family," said Walls, who was accompanied by his girlfriend, Christina Stone.

His sculpture and five others that were part of the Florida Outdoor Sculpture Competition held by the Polk Museum of Art will be displayed in Sebring.

The city's Community Redevelopment Association paid about $7,000 to have the six sculptures for a year.

This is the first year that any city outside of Polk County has received sculptures from the competition.

Robin Hinote, director of the CRA, said she liked Walls' work because it is kid friendly. She said she didn't realize at first the meaning of its name until she saw it in person.

Walls transported the metal sculpture, weighing about 300 pounds, from southeast North Carolina, where he creates his art.

He began his art career 15 years ago and started creating sculptures when he was a graduate student at Winthrop University in South Carolina. He has created 45 such sculptures since then, he said.

Walls has also done ceramics, clay works and paintings.

As far as his tank creations go, "A tank can be a destructive thing, but it can be a protective thing also," he said.

The same can apply to people, Walls explained: Some people are dangerous to others while others are protective.

Other future locations for the outdoor sculptures will include Circle Park and Centennial Park.

All the art work is expected to arrive within the next two to three weeks and will be outdoors, and Hinote said she's concerned about possible vandalism but the CRA has insurance.

She hopes, though, that people will respect the sculptures.

While some artists may increase the chances of vandalism by displaying provocative works, Walls said: "I never intend to put out art work to insult anyone."

Adam Justice, curator of the Polk Museum of Art, said he's been busy helping transport the pieces, and the heavier ones required a crane.


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