Dancing with Sea Lions
The Dancing With Sea Lions project began as a fundraiser for the 20th Anniversary of the Florence Events Center. The volunteers of the Florence Arts, Culture, and Entertainment nonprofit group (previously known as the Friends of the FEC) headed up this project in conjunction with the Florence Events Center Staff. Twenty life size sea lion sculptures were each painted by a different artist. All of them were displayed with their sponsors along the Oregon Coast till October of 2016, when they were then purchased by businesses and individuals. Fifteen of them are still publicly displayed in Florence and near by coastal locations. See our 'Where are they now' map for their current locations, and check our blog for updates. Share your Dancing Sea Lion pics with us and we'll add them to our Gallery of images.
Project Name: Umi no Nami (Sea Of Waves)
Sponsor and Owner: Florence Urban Renewal Agency
Blessed with a gift of wanderlust, Florence Artist, Ellen Huntingdon has traveled the world over. But what has affected her most is the ukiyo-e print style of Japan. Huntingdon says she fell in love with their fascination of the ocean and its many depictions. She says there are a surprising amount of commonalities that tie our little town by the sea to our western neighbors, this includes our shared appreciation of the natural world that surrounds us. Huntingdon believes the ocean is one of our greatest unifying factors, a bridge between our two cultures. The mighty Pacific is the main inspiration for “Umi no Nami.”
With "Umi No Nami," Huntingdon said she wanted to incorporate her favorite style of art into a piece of work that is representative of her community. Its rolling waves illustrate the spirit of Dancing With Sea Lions, giving Naota a playful design that helps create movement from head to tail. There is no single focal point that strictly defines "Umi No Nami". From every angle, every side, there is something interesting and different to see. She hopes that this piece adds color, life, and enjoyment to the community in which it is placed.
As a reward Ellen says the smile she receives when someone looks at her art is the greatest encouragement she can be given to continue. Art is never just for herself and she loves to share her passion. Huntingdon always hope that someone will be inspired by her works as much as she has been inspired by the works of others. Inspired to greet the day with a smile, to try for something just out of a reach, to slow down and enjoy life just a bit more. Ellen said Florence is her home, and it is a privilege to be able to give something back.
Throughout her Naota project she used Winsor & Newton Artists’ Acrylic White Gesso,
Winsor & Newton Professional Acrylic Paint and Lascaux Acrylic Transparent Varnish.