Louis Habeck and “Imaginarium” visits Montana Western

On Sep. 12 Louis Habeck visited the University of Montana Western Fine Arts Gallery for an artist talk and gallery reception of his exhibition titled “Imaginarium.” Habeck’s unique perspective on sculpture and photography combine to make scenes that explore imagination and creativity.

Louis Habeck in his mask

Artist Louis Habeck recreates a scene from one of his photography pieces.

Habeck was born and currently lives in Billings, Mont. He received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with an emphasis in photography from the University of Montana in 2011. Habeck’s passion for sculpting and art started at a young age drawing from the influence of his artistic parents. During high school, Habeck began experimenting with sculpting insulation foam. The foam was lightweight, easy to work with, and allowed for Habeck to create large sculptors with little hassle. Fascinated by the taxidermy work of an old mule deer on his parents’ wall, Habeck started to create “creatures” of his own out of the foam and air drying clay.

Uncanny, playful and bizarre, the art invites one to look twice at their imagination and intersection of reality.

Habeck continued experimenting with his sculptures while attending the University of Montana and eventually opened his first “Imaginarium” gallery while he was senior. Habeck was chosen for the Artist’s Innovation Award by the Montana Arts Council in 2015 and has visited various college classes, conferences and art institutions across Montana, Idaho and Wyoming, demonstrating his innovative sculpting techniques.

Through painting or sculpture, Habeck’s art depicts distinctive, melancholy creatures that investigate the transitional times in their lives.

While visiting the Fine Arts Gallery at the University of Montana Western, Habeck brought five sculptures, two sculpted masks, and framed photographs featuring scenes with his art. The exceptional pieces captured the imagination of the audience and allowed them to construct their own story.

Habeck’s attention to detail gives special life to his work, saying that it all starts with the eyes, “The eyes hold much of the emotion and is typically what I work on last. It is the finishing touch that captures the entire theme of the work and sets the tone.”

To find out more about Louis Habeck, or to see more of his work, visit his website louishabeck.com or his Instagram.

For more information about the University of Montana Western Fine Arts Gallery, please contact Aja Mujinga Sherrard at aja.sherrard@umwestern.edu or call 406-683-7313.

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