Ice carvers worked for three days to create the frozen beauties of Anchorage Downtown Partnership’s 2015 Crystal Gallery of Ice in Town Square, and the temperature dropped just in time to ensure that melting won’t commence…at least, not yet!
I love how inviting the sculptures make Town Square; even though I always detour through the park when I can, the sculptures elevate a simple walk into something extra special, especially once darkness falls and the sculptures light up the night. I had to restrain myself from reaching out to feel the texture of the ice (hence the ropes keeping people like me from acting on impulse) – fortunately for us touchy types, an interactive railroad engine beckons children of all ages to hop inside and play.
I’ve always loved visiting the ice sculptures, but this year was particularly fun because I was a judge! Nine of the sculptures in Town Square are part of the carving competition, which attracts artists from all over the state, along with a few international competitors as well. It was surprisingly tough to pick a winner – the hours and energy poured into these temporary works of art is impressive, and I found something to love in each of them: a leopard prowls, its powerful grace frozen in a stealthy moment… a mythical chimerical creature writhes, its icy elegance almost impossible to capture on camera…two swans preen lovingly, longingly…acrobatic animals balance in a playful tower…. the detail and composition of each piece is incredible. Although these are the official winners, everyone should visit and pick their own favorites:
- “Kirin” by William Hartgrove and John Trescott
- “Hunter” by An Qi Feng and Alan Armbruster
- “Suspended Emotion” by Paul Hanis and Patric Boonstra
Carvers Choice “Symphony on Ice” by Tom and Carol Lewando
A number of other sculptures are on display around downtown as part of the Gallery Walk of Ice Exhibition; you can see them at the following locations:
- Bear And Raven Theater AK
- Snow City Cafe
- Alaska Railroad *Located in Town Square*
- Hard Rock Cafe Anchorage *Located in Town Square*
- Visit Anchorage
- Lynden Transport *Located in Town Square*
- The Hotel Captain Cook
- Oomingmak Musk Ox Producers Co-operative
- Anchorage Parks & Recreation *Located in Town Square*
Photos and more about the Crystal Gallery of Ice here.