Ole Miss students and Oxford locals alike have noticed eccentric metal sculptures appearing in spots around town. These pieces of art popping up in Oxford are part of a new exhibit titled “A Long Road Back” that was created by artist George Tobolowsky and is curated by the UM Museum.
The outdoor exhibit features nine different stops around Oxford, beginning at the UM Museum. Many local businesses are participating in the exhibit by hosting Tobolowksy’s sculptures outside their establishments. Among these is the Graduate Oxford, which features a piece called “Intersecting Intersections” at the intersection of North Lamar Boulevard and Jefferson Avenue.
Other featured spots include The Inn at Ole Miss, Green Roof Lounge at the Courtyard by Marriott, Baptist Memorial Hospital, FNC Park, Oxford Canteen and South Lamar Court. The exhibit ends inside Rowan Oak with a piece called “Red/Black Road to the Blue City.”
Tobolowsky is originally from Dallas, and he attended Southern Methodist University as an accounting major and sculpture minor. After graduating, Tobolowsky pursued a business career. It wasn’t until 14 years ago, after seeking encouragement from his sculpting mentor, James Surls, that Tobolowsky began creating his own art.
Tobolowsky established himself as an international artist over the past decade and has created over 500 abstract sculptures. Tobolowksy’s artistic approach consists of him creating abstract pieces with metal scraps, which are known to artists as “found objects.”
“These found objects, however, are not of everyday sort but, rather, (are) bulky industrial metal castoffs that I scour scrap yards and fabrication plants to find,” Tobolowsky said in his online biography. “I rarely alter these metal pieces but, instead, work to fit the individual scraps together — much like the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle — into a balanced composition.”
The exhibit began on Aug. 21 and will continue throughout the rest of the semester. The opening reception was held on Sept. 13, and the UM Museum will host an “Evening with the Artist” event where art fans can meet Tobolowsky at 6 p.m. on Nov. 8.
Kate Wallace, the membership, events and communications coordinator for the UM Museum, said Tobolowsky’s exhibit is for art fans looking for pieces in a unique medium.
“This exhibit is different from other exhibits we’ve had,” Wallace said. “I think people will enjoy the exhibit because it’s different. Oxford is an art community that knows how to appreciate different styles of work.”
With the town-wide exhibit of his eccentric and modern style of sculpting, Tobolowsky has caught the eyes of many all over Oxford. The UM Museum has maps available in person or online for those wanting to experience Tobolowsky’s uniquely interactive exhibit.