Inspired by a large fish mosaic hanging on a wall in Gamcheon Culture Village in Busan, South Korea, we here in Aromas, California now have our own big fish. Constructed from 350 small wooden fish painted by residents and friends, the Aromas big fish is 31-feet-long and "swims" in our downtown park.
My most sincere thanks go to the Aromas Eagles, Aromas Hills Artisans, and the Aromas Community Grange for their support; to Leslie, Linda, John, Michael, Miles and Wallace, for their time, energy and faith in my project idea; and to all the talented members of our little community who joined in and painted a fish.
My question is, why do we need a big fish in our park? A park is a park is a park. We have lovely trees, a pretty stone wall and plenty of grass. Maybe we have the giant fish sculpture because we are big fish in a little pond, because we don’t mind swimming up-stream for a good cause, because we are a notch above having an ordinary park, because we are creative people who appreciate beauty and talent, because we love new ideas and grand inventions, because we love our town and want it to shine. Would that also account for the chicken-box?
I happened to observe the individual fish being painted by youngsters, oldsters and every age in between. The painters took their job seriously and completed some very original and beautiful fish. But the big fish in all of this is Tina Baine, who took her paint to every local activity, function, meeting, festival—you name it, until she had 350 painted fish. Putting them together to make the big fish was an incredible task, but being the “Maker Gal” that she is, we now have a stunningly beautiful fish swimming its way through our lovely park. Thank you, Tina!