WaterWorks Is Ready for the Derby

WaterWorks - Gallopalooza horseLocal abstract artist Rita Cameron never painted a Gallopalooza horse before. When she got an email from Brightside, the organization that hosts “Louisville’s sidewalk Derby,” to let her know her application to paint one of the horse statues for the 2024 Gallopalooza was accepted, at first she wasn’t sure why they were contacting her.

“I’d forgotten I’d even submitted my name,” she said. “When I read the email, I was like ‘Oh, excellent!’”

For many hours in January and February, she painted alongside other Gallopalooza artists in a studio in the Louisville Mega Cavern to bring Louisville Water-sponsored WaterWorks to life. Her inspiration was the imagery of ice caves.

WaterWorks - Gallopalooza horse“In order to emulate these cave formations, I used a process of glazing; the overlaying and blending of color, creating translucency,” Cameron said. “That, incorporated with line work, emphasizes the movement within WaterWorks, as the hues intermingle.

“I wanted to show all the aspects of water. It can be solid. It also can be subtle, soft, and sexy. It is powerful and life-giving. Using these techniques, I aspired to convey this to the viewer. The horse itself provided a curvilinear landscape that guided and accentuated the gestural flow of WaterWorks.”


“I am looking forward to seeing WaterWorks in natural light,” she added. “The colors are going to pop once it sees daylight!”

WaterWorks - Gallopalooza horse

All the finished Gallopalooza statues will be displayed during a March 21 VIP Preview Party for artists, sponsors, and board members at the Churchill Downs First Turn Club, which then will host a public preview of the statues from March 22 to 24. After this, the statues will be delivered to the sponsors and displayed throughout the community. Watch this website for a report on the location of WaterWorks.

“It’ll be a total sense of pride for me whenever I go down the street and see that horse,” Cameron said.