By Andrea Papagianis
As seen throughout Dana Point, local talents and internationally renowned artists, activists and celebrities have joined together for a common cause, to save the dwindling Asian elephant population.
Each week, until the herd departs on its next journey, the Dana Point Times is highlighting one local or regional artist’s contribution to the Elephant Parade: Welcome to America open air exhibit, the largest fundraising event for The Asian Elephant Foundation, which is on display until early November.
Highlighting the plight of one of Earth’s largest creatures fit right in with the passion of one local artist, whose larger than life marine murals have taken him around the world and back.
The artist, photographer, educator, avid scuba diver and explorer, Wyland, has spent his career shaping the way citizens across the globe view the environment. Through his nonprofit Wyland Foundation he has engaged millions of students worldwide for nearly 20 years.
With his 100th mural, a 24,000 square foot piece, stretching half a mile long and painted with the help of student artists from 110 nations, Wyland is no stranger to odd canvases. One of his latest creations, a 5 foot tall baby elephant statue, sporting goggles, gives an elephant’s view of scuba diving. The playful painting melds Wyland’s passion for marine life and the organizing foundation’s educational efforts from here to Amsterdam.
ELEPHANT: “I Brought My Own Snorkel”
ARTIST: Marine wildlife artist and environmental steward Wyland
LOCATION: Laguna Cliffs Marriott Resort and Spa, 25135 Park Lantern