One of South Dakota's best kept secrets could be hidden in the basement of a building on NorthernState's campus. Many might agree, it shouldn't be kept a secret.
“We are in the basement of one of the buildings on NorthernStateUniversity’s campus, so we aren't that visible,” public relations director Jennifer Deutsch said.
Ben Victor is an accomplished sculptor. He is not only the youngest sculptor to be represented in Washington, D.C.’s statuary hall, but with his Iowa statue dedicated this year, he is now the only living sculptor to have two statues in the hall.
“He’s lived here in the community, and he started his career here in Aberdeen, so many people know who he is. I think sometimes they think they shouldn't come down and bother him and if they can watch him sculpt,” Deutsch said.
Versions of all his work are displayed in his gallery on NSU’s campus. Anyone is welcome to visit the studio to see his masterpieces. In fact the city of Aberdeen encourages it.
“I would hope that getting the word out, just like they come here to walk through Storybook land or they come here to go to the water park, any of the number of things that get them to come out here to know that they can tour the studio,” Deutsch said.
Victor is working on some pieces that may draw tourists and local attention. This June his statue of World War II hero Cecil Harris will be dedicated, and put on NorthernState's campus.