Lake County’s bison unveiling with street artist Felix Maldonado

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THE CLIENTS OF Opportunity Enterprises use their talents to paint a life-sized bison sculpture that reflects Porter County's history.

Felix “Flex” Maldonado was chosen as the artist to create Lake County’s bison for the State’s Bison-tennial project. Street artist, Felix Maldonado, the South Shore CVA and South Shore Arts unveiled the Lake County bison on July 21 at the Indiana Welcome Center in Hammond. The fiberglass bison is a part of the state’s Bison-tennial Public Art Project. Its permanent home will be at the Indiana Welcome Center.

Maldonado was chosen as the bison artist from dozens of other artists who submitted artworks during the open call for artists. The South Shore CVA selected Maldonado to paint the bison to represent the South Shore and specifically Lake County. The bison is “forged” from steel and transitions to molten steel and a fiery sunset, representing the region’s people – a cultural melting pot and transforms into Lake Michigan and flora.

Maldonado hails from East Chicago, Indiana and is a self-taught street and graffiti artist who helped form CISA Studio, LLC. Maldonado’s works can be seen on buildings throughout the Calumet Region and has created advertisements, billboards and fine art pieces. He continues to paint and create in and outside of the region and maintains a studio in Hammond, Ind.

The Bison-tennial Public Art Project was coordinated through the Indiana Association of United Ways and is a Bicentennial Legacy Project to help celebrate Indiana’s 200th birthday. The bison is approx. 5-foot tall and made of fiberglass. There is at least one bison on display in each of Indiana’s 92 counties. The Lake County bison will be a part of a number of Bicentennial events in 2016.

Learn more about Indiana’s Bicentennial and the South Shore’s project at www.alongthesouthshore.com/ibc. Learn more about artist, “Flex” at www.felixmaldonado.com. The Indiana Welcome Center is located at 7770 Corinne Drive, Hammond, Ind.

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