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Film Instructor, Student PARK Sculpture Downtown

Published: September 17, 2010
Greg LeSar’s neighbors couldn’t believe what he and UT junior Richard Walker were building in LeSar’s front yard this summer.

The mismatch of wood pallets, re-used paint and reclaimed nails and screws were just slowly revealing what the UT adjunct instructor and Walker ’11 had in mind: a horse.

“We’re not asking people to think too much about it,” said LeSar, who teaches film and digital media at UT and the Art Institute of Tampa.

LeSar and Walker displayed the sculpture in a parking spot in downtown Tampa on Sept. 17, part of bigger event called National PARK(ing) Day. Six groups collaborated for the fourth-annual event hosted by the Tampa Downtown Partnership and arts organization SuperTest Projects, installing parks in parking spaces for the day.

“It promotes community engagement and gets people to think about urban spaces and how they are allocated,” said Sarah Howard, event co-coordinator. Nearly everything was donated for the one-day event, and participants were asked to think about using eco-friendly objects in their displays.

LeSar teamed up with Walker and artist Tim Gibbons, who teaches drawing at the Hyde Park Art Studio, to create Nature Mutation, their call for more art and parks in public spaces.

LeSar typically creates sculptures like the horse for use in movies and one-time commercial shoots, the waste of which bothered him. Everything in this horse piece, though, was either donated or found.

“We wanted to breathe life into stuff people thought was already dead,” LeSar said. “It’s not trash art, because it’s not tying 3,000 Snickers wrappers together. It’s not fine art, because it’s not exhibited in a fine art setting. It’s eco-art, and it’s something everyone can do.”

Walker, a film and media arts major, said the experience helped give him an introduction to sculpture.

“This influenced me in a big way to get my hands dirty,” Walker said.

Keeping the eco theme going, LeSar said they have plans to re-use the horse sculpture. They want to repaint it, then film it being burned as part of a music video for a local Tampa band.

Jamie Pilarczyk, Web Writer
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