Jim Gallucci, a graduate of LeMoyne College (BA, English 1973) and Syracuse University (BFA, Art 1974 and MFA, Sculpture 1976), has been a sculptor for over 30 years. He has worked as an art instructor at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and the University of Alabama at Huntsville. He was also an Exhibit Designer for the North Carolina Zoological Park in Asheboro, NC.
Presently, Jim works full time designing and fabricating sculpture in his Greensboro studio assisted by his staff. Most of the works are commissions for public, corporate, and residential spaces around the country. For six years (1997-2002) he showed sculpture at the Pier Walk Sculpture Show in Chicago, IL. This annual show took place on the Navy Pier and was the world’s largest outdoor sculpture show. Over 8.2 million people walked through the venue. Jim has also been selected for such international shows as the World Expo 88 in Brisbane, Australia and the 7th Henry Moore Grand Prize Exhibition at the Utsukushi-ga-hara Open-Air Museum, Hakone, Japan and Ube Japan. In 2007 Jim earned a Diploma of Nomination from the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Jim’s most recent sculptures have utilized the element of doors and gateways. He says that, “gates have been found throughout the history of Western Civilization as not only utilitarian architectural elements, but as symbols in art and literature. This symbolism arises from the paradox that the gate inherently possesses. A gate may be opened or closed; a way of passage or obstruction; a means of confinement or release. And today, the symbol of a gate is used to describe a computer chip at work, storing and releasing bytes of information.
“I use the format of gates and doors in my sculpture in order to give the public access to my art. This interaction is an “entry” for the public to embrace art.”
These gates often involve interaction. In Raleigh, NC, Jim designed a 62 foot long gate for Exploris (a children’s interactive global awareness museum) called the “Whisper Gates.” This functional gate uses the theme of communicating with the world. Sound tubes wind throughout the structure creating a lyrical interpretation of the world, while children of all ages can whisper messages through the gate. This interaction of discovery and communication brings the global experience to everyone. These whisper gates have given way to whisper benches.
“My benches are publicly placed objects that invite interaction with the passers-by. The benches are playful objects that invite the public to sit and talk with a friend or acquaintance. Though each can function as a “seat,” there is an impracticality of form that lures viewers to explore each bench and try to discover what they are about.”
Other projects include the “Veteran’s Memorial Archways” for Rockville, MD, the “Gate of Opportunity” for the South Trust Bank building, Jacksonville, FL, and “Play Ball,” the baseball gates for UNC-Greensboro. In 2006, Jim also designed the gates for First Horizon Park, the home of the Greensboro Grasshoppers Baseball team. This gate spans 52 feet and depicts an enormous baseball bat.
In 2005, the shop Jim that had worked out of for nearly 20 years was sold. After searching for a ready built shop, Jim decided to design and build his own shop and studio. The building is 7,200 square feet and houses a large design studio, an upstairs area that holds Jim’s models of previous work as well as a library. There is 5,000 square feet of shop space where Jim and his assistants create his sculpture.
With each project, Jim brings a unique sense of self-expression while captivating the viewer. “Art is the physical manifestation of an idea or event that calls forth an emotional response from the viewer. It speaks to us and evokes a chord deep within us. Good art challenges us, can make us feel righteous, move us, soothe us, heal us and bring us peace.”