Harold Balazs

Spokane Public Radio

Blair Williams, Owner of The Art Spirit Gallery and Brandon Rudd, Owner of Artistic Resources and Technology join Verne in the studio to reflect on the work and influence of Spokane artist Harold Balazs. 

Tonight, Friday, January 12th, 2018 Art Spirit Gallery of Fine Art in Coeur d' Alene kicks off  "I Did it My Way", an exhibition of the life and work of Harold Balazs. 

More information can be found on Spokane Public Radio's Online Community Calendar.

Inland Journal Piece "The Prankster"

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Cognitive Dissonance

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Inland Journal, Jan. 4, 2018

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Inland Journal for January 4, 2018

    ▪    We’ll preview some of the important issues that will go before the Washington and Idaho legislatures this year, including a possible change in how Idaho schools are funded. We’ll talk with Idaho state Representative Wendy Horman about a few of the recommendations of a committee that’s worked on that for the last two years.
    ▪    We look at some of the important issues that will arise during the legislative sessions and some of the wishes of Spokane-area folks.
    ▪    We talk with Spokane Mayor David Condon about his veto of a city campaign finance ordinance.
    ▪    We remember the late Spokane artist Harold Balazs.

Janean Jorgensen


Harold Balazs passed away on Saturday, December 30, 2017 at the age of 89. His artwork will again be featured this January at The Art Spirit Gallery in Coeur d'Alene. We hope you enjoy this compilation of archived recordings with "Uncle Harold." 

Spokane artist Harold Balazs had a crazy idea.

While creating the steel sculpture Spokane Public Radio had commissioned for the Fire Station No. 3 Courtyard, he realized the different components would ring with different tones when gently struck. Why not get a few percussionists to “play” the artwork?

In September 2016, SPR held a small ceremony to dedicate the Jim Sheehan Family Courtyard at the new broadcast facility in the historic Fire Station No. 3. This move to a new facility “rang in” a new era of service. Spokane Symphony percussionists Bryan Bogue, Paul Raymond and Adam Wallstein volunteered to do the striking. Jim Sheehan and Family looked on with Harold Balazs and friends as the percussionists improvised a six-minute piece on “Listen,” the sculpture Balazs fashioned to abstractly suggest a human ear.

Harold Blaze: "Listen"

Harold Balazs artwork dots Spokane's cityscape. Waves of steel seem to float above the Spokane River in "Centennial." Children in Riverfront Park run through the water flowing from his 24' columns of the Rotary Fountain. Scores of people have illicitly climbed the concrete tower nicknamed "Lantern" behind the INB Performing Arts Center.

SPR also has a piece of Harold Balazs's imagination installed in front of Fire Station No. 3. Titled "Listen" and made possible by funds from the Harriet Cheney Cowles Foundation, the abstract steel circular piece could be the renowned artist's final large public work.

While the inspiration is completely Balazs (pronounced "Blaze") some of the actual cutting, welding and grinding was done by family members assisting at the studio on the north side of Spokane County. Balazs suffers from a type of aphasia and also has tremors in his extremities, but he thrives on being busy with his true passion -- art in any medium.

   Artist Harold Balazs and writer, Dirk Stratton spoke with Verne this morning about their collaboration on a limited edition book of drawings, The Family Album, with captions. The Family Album is published by I-Beam Books, limited to 526 copies, 500 numbered and signed by the artist.