Apr 04

Walking Horse Gallery Opens with Western Gun Fights, Knife Throwing and a Bronze Tiger

There is yet another reason to take the drive on FM 279 to the art community of downtown Ben Wheeler. Walking Horse Gallery opened Saturday, March 23 with an incredible exhibit of western art by more than a dozen area artists.

Joining in the grand opening celebration was cowboy poet Jerry Tolbert, the Black Powder Action Group who performed re-enactments of western gun fights and a Texas State Championship knife thrower. The entire community seemed to embrace the spirit of the old west.


The highlight of the event was the unveiling of a bronze statue memorial for Les Whitt, award-winning director of the Alexandria, Louisiana Zoological Park, who worked with celebrity, animal expert, Jack Hanna.

Whitt was a mentor to local artist and resident Bill Williamson, Jr., who created the statue and is responsible for bringing the exhibit to Ben Wheeler, prior to its official dedication later this year at the Louisiana Zoological Park.


Whitt took an interest in Williamson’s illustrations and rock formations at Tyler’s Caldwell Zoo which led to Williamson building several features at the Alexandria Zoological Park. You see Williamson’s concrete sculpture within the décor of the Gallery as tree trunks made of stone make functional items like lighting and the thermostat disappear amidst the art.

The exhibit features artists: Anne Roberts, Bill Williamson, David Ackerson, Doug Carter, Gaylon Dingler, Herb Bryant, Janelle Pollard, John Dietz, Karen White, Monty Graham, Scotty Baker and more. The exhibit runs through April 28.

Visit Walking Horse at 1611 FM 279, Ben Wheeler, 75752 or call 903-833-1070