The Forest Heritage Center Museum (FHC), located in the heart of Beavers Bend State Park, Broken Bow, Oklahoma, was officially designated as the “Wood Art Capital of Oklahoma” in 2010. This new fame to claim authorizes the museum to bestow the title of “Master Woodworking Artist of the Year” to a commendable artist in their field.
Wayne Delyea of Granbury, Texas, was presented the "Master Woodworking Artist of the Year" title on Sunday, March 6th, 2016 with a piece called 'Burn Ban Rocker' during the opening exhibit reception and awards presentation at the Forest Heritage Center Museum.
Bringing up a close second was James McClain of Wichita Falls, Texas for a woodturned vessel titled “Vortex #256” and third place went to Gary Sanders of Greenville, Texas for a sculpted woodturning titled “Suspended Box.”
Places for the “Exemplary Local Artist of the Year” category included:
- 1st Place: Roger Tipton of Ashdown, AR for his maple burl lidded box
- 2nd Place: Darrell Whisenhunt of Mena, AR for his splayed stave spalted oak vessel
- 3rd Place: Roger Tipton of Ashdown, AR for his 3-D falling block bowl
The Forest Heritage Center Museum offered several Purchase Awards from local artists in addition to the whole show. The Purchase Award pieces will go into our permanent collection and will be on display throughout the year at the Forest Heritage Center Museum. This year’s purchase awards included a piece titled “Elm Burl Vessel” by William Bradford of Idabel, “3-D Falling Block Bowl” by Roger Tipton of Ashdown, AR, “Walnut & Bamboo Vessel” by James McClain of Wichita Falls, TX, and “Cherry Bowl” by Robert Wilson of Newalla, OK.
The exhibit continued through May 8th, 2016 as it showcases some of the most intriguing and innovative pieces of wood art selected from eleven artists. “The objects will be diverse and should create a lot of conversation about the beautiful art forms that come from trees,” stated Doug Zook, FHC director. “We are pleased to have these talented wood artists commit to a project of this magnitude and help raise the stature of wood art in Oklahoma.”
Competing 2016 artists included:
William Bradford, Idabel, Oklahoma;
Wayne Delyea, Granbury, Texas;
Ron Engel-Wilson, Idabel, Oklahoma;
Butch Lindsey, Tuttle Oklahoma;
James McClain, Wichita Falls, Texas;
Allen Phillips, Dekalb, Texas;
Gary Sanders, Greenville, Texas;
Roger Tipton, Ashdown, Arkansas;
Kevin Walker, Rudy, Arkansas;
Al Ward, Valliant, Oklahoma;
Darrell Whisenhunt, Mena, Arkansas;
Robert Wilson, Newalla, Oklahoma;
Scott Wilson, Eufaula, Oklahoma;
Doug Zook, Idabel, Oklahoma.
For more information call 580-494-6497, email the museum at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.forestery.ok.gov/fhc.
This exhibit is made possible by the Forest Heritage Center Advisory Board, Oklahoma Arts Council, Oklahoma Forestry Services and members of the Forest Heritage Center Association.
Quintus Herron, former FHC Board Chair and one of the original FHC founders, pointed out that from the museum’s inception in 1976 it has promoted wood art, beginning with the acquisition of the iconic Peter Toth sculpture known as the Whispering Giant in 1976, the recent addition of the Pine Maiden and the board of directors’ ongoing sponsorship of the woodturning classes at area high schools
In 1996, the Wood Art Gallery was established to showcase some of the finest works of art utilizing wood as a medium. The Wood Art Gallery has been very well-received by museum visitors and has generated a new audience of wood collectors and art lovers who appreciate the beauty and artistry of wood.