“Fluke,” a work by local artist Micajah Bienvenu, is on its way to becoming the icon of Friday Harbor. The poled aluminum representation of a whale tail, set in place this morning (January 10, 2013), now overlooks the town atop the outcropping above the ferry lanes at the corner of First and A streets.
The Town of Friday Harbor's purchased the sculpture as a piece of public art. The purchase of the sculpture was made possible by generous donations from 31 different local residents and businesses, providing the means to both buy and install the art. Bienvenu had received offers from other communities in the northwest to purchase the work, but opted to sell it to the Town at a discounted price to ensure it would stay in his hometown.
Local resident Lori Stokes led the effort to raise the $25,000 purchase price. “I can’t thank Lori enough for her efforts on behalf of the Town” said Mayor Carrie Lacher. “She and the other contributors have provided us with a world-class statue that celebrates the natural assets we enjoy on San Juan Island. I want to thank everyone involved with this wonderful gift to our community.”
A ribbon cutting ceremony will be held sometime later this month at which time the art will be formally dedicated. The public is welcome to attend the event.
“Fluke” weighs 180 pounds and has dimensions of 4 feet in height, 12 feet in width and 8 feet in depth. Sculptor Micajah Bienvenu resides and maintains his shop on Mount Dallas Road on San Juan Island.
He has a number of works currently displayed at Roche Harbor and was the artist who produced the piece entitled “Dancing Fool” outside the front entrance of San Juan Community Theatre in Friday Harbor.
Mr. Bienvenu also has publicly commissioned pieces in Coral Springs, Florida; Portland, Oregon; and in the cities of Bellevue, Kirkland, Walla Walla, Richland and Deer Park in the State of Washington.