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Archive for March, 2015

Builder’s Take Down Marine Artist Wyland’s Whale Mural To Make Way For New Condos
by Staff Writer








Opinion Corner

One day, not too soon from now, locals will say to a newcomer that once upon a time there was a great whale mural proudly displayed on a side of a downtown building.  For years, it seemed that locals and tourists had the opportunity to gaze in awe at the inspiring work of world renowned artist Robert Wyland. In the 80’s, Wyland painted 100 life-sized Whaling Murals around the world.  One such  mural, which has been  on the side of the old Continental hotel near the Granville Street bridge since 1985, is almost gone. On a recent visit, I can only see part of this wonderful mural which always caught my eye and attention whenever I was in the area. It made my proud to be a Vancouverite and yet, in a little while , the mural will be all but a memory, relegated to newspaper and website archives.

Why do we always seem to destroy something beautiful in the name of money?  It was not just another wall mural. It was a statement. It was a beautiful symbol of our relationship with the environment and especially about the beauty of whales.

Thanks to the wrecking ball, the beloved mural will be no more. Although Vancouver is renowned world-wide for the city’s proximity to nature, to whales and to the beauty of the outdoors, it’s a crying shame that the whaling mural had to go in the name of condos.

I love public art, and if you go to the top cities of the world, like Paris, New York or Cuba, you will see plenty of intricate artwork, statues and murals almost everywhere you look. Lots of murals are about people.

But here in Vancouver, the whaling mural was unique.

It made made me think about the environment and how important it is to see whales and other cetacean mammals like dolphins enjoy freedom in the wild. I dislike so-called “family entertainment” venues like Seaworld, where seals and dolphins are forced to perform in front of an audience.  It’s cruel for the mammals and it is so wrong.

So Wise Traveller, if you love the wild life, don’t encourage operators to imprison intelligent mammals like dolphins in the name of money. If you go to Seaworld, you are only encouraging operators to buy more dolphins and let them live in an area the size of a small swimming pool.

It’s been reported that the city is commissioning a new mural. I hope it is going to be about whales or dolphins. One hopes the next mural will be in a more permanent location for everyone to enjoy for the present and future generations.


March 17th

General Interest
March 2015
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