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: Wish You Were Here
A fun family tradition gave artist Marsh Horner the inspiration for Wish You Were Here. Post cards might be a throw back from the past, but they are a quirky, inexpensive souvenir and Marsha’s family still enjoys sending and receiving them. Mixed with that tradition is the thought of traveling the Oregon coast with its rich iconic scenes and the idea to stick postcards on this visiting sea lion brought a smile her my heart. The post marks incorporate many of our coastal communities, all just a hop, skip and a jump (or swim) away. She said she is eager to share the beauty and adventure here. What better way than to send a postcard? It all inspired her to say, “Wish you were here.”
Meet Wsshh! This frolicking young stellar sea lion has been traveling along the Oregon coast. Stopping along the way, she has collected postcards from the places she liked the most. Postal stamps, confirm towns from Newport all the way to Winchester Bay. Reedsport, Dune City, Waldport, she has seen them all. Check out her postcards and cancellation marks, compare your notes and see if you have visited the same places! As true with most sea lions, Wsshh is very vocal. Vocal on facebook, that is. Yes, Wsshh even has her own Facebook page! She is gaining more and more friends. You can “like” her at www.facebook.com/FlorenceWsshh
Whimsy, color, Oregon imagery…what better way to enter into a new phase of her life, than to resurrect the artist within. Marsha left behind a career in design and moved to Oregon with her husband, Ken. But the need to create was knocking at the door. That’s when Marsha saw the Dancing with Sea Lions call for artists. She said, “It’s with joy I share the images that were dancing in my mind last December. Vivid colors, oversized images of postcards and a pen. Each design element, started with a small sketch or photo, enlarged and transferred onto the sculpted piece. I hadn’t painted for 17 years and the encounter with products I had never used, both enlightened and frightened me. I simply “pretended” I knew what I as doing. The Sea Lion body was originally a bold dark color. Playing further with the pigments I remembered some old techniques and suddenly the sea lion went from a solid, bold charcoal to what you see today. It was not my plan to have it realistic. Sometimes art just takes a journey of it’s own. This sea lion sure did. I’m excited to kick start my new art life here in Florence, Oregon.”
Marsha used: Liquitex Professional Products including Gesso, Airbrush Medium, Liquitex Paint Marker, Varnish and Lascaux Tansparentlack 1-UV