Jackson, Wyoming- July 28, 2011- Renowned landscape architect Walter Hood, discussed his approach to the Wyoming landscape at the National Museum of Wildlife Art last evening, July 26, 2011, in Jackson Hole, Wyo. Though Hood is perhaps best known for transforming neglected urban spaces into meaningful public places, he was in Jackson Hole to talk about one of his current projects, the sculpture trail outdoor art venue on the museum’s rugged butte overlooking the National Elk Refuge.
“Everywhere you go in Jackson the landscape is huge,” Hood said as he talked about developing his concept for the under-construction sculpture trail, scheduled for completion in fall 2012. The design makes optimal use of the National Museum of Wildlife Art’s Jackson Hole butte-side vantage point, displaying key works against the spectacular backdrop of the Gros Ventre Range with minimal disruption of the land’s existing contours. Despite the area’s famously beautiful mountain landscape, Hood pointed out, “When you’re in a place – even one like this – for so long, it becomes ordinary. I work to make things visible.”
In addition to his free public presentation, Hood led a special hard hat tour of the sculpture trail site for museum members. The three-quarter-mile outdoor art venue will showcase nearly 30 permanent and temporary artworks and can also be accessed by bike and foot via the North Highway 89 pathway out of Jackson.
Hood, who works from his Hood Design Studio in Oakland, Calif., is known for his innovative and people-friendly designs of such high-profile public spaces as the De Young Museum grounds in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park. He was recognized as a 2011 “Character Approved” honoree “changing the face of American Culture” by USA Network, and his design concept titled “Democracy’s Front Porch” was recently named one of five finalists in a design competition to revamp President’s Park South in Washington, DC.
A member of the Museums West consortium and accredited by the American Association of Museums, the National Museum of Wildlife Art of the United States provides an exciting calendar of exhibitions from its permanent collection and changing exhibitions from around the globe. A complete schedule of museum exhibitions and events is available online at http://www.wildlifeart.org. The museum is also active on Facebook at wildlifeartjh and on Twitter at @wildlifeartjh.