Oak Harbor, Washington: Sidewalk Sea Monster

Unveiled in 2015, sculpted by Bill Hunt, a big octopus is frozen in mid-battle with the submarine Nautilus from "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea."
Address:
SE Pioneer Way, Oak Harbor, WA
Directions:
Where Hwy 20 turns from east-west to north-south, continue driving east on SE Pioneer Way. The Kraken will be on the right, just past the first stoplight intersection (SE City Beach St.).
Admission:
Free
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
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Sea Monster.

Sidewalk Sea Monster

In 2011, sculptor Bill Hunt submitted a proposal for a piece of permanent public art to the Oak Harbor Arts Commission. It was a harbor seal family on a bed of kelp. The Commission rejected it and asked for something more memorable. Hunt gave them just that. In 2015 his new sculpture was unveiled: a monstrous Pacific octopus in a stormy ocean, attacking the submarine Nautilus from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.

The octopus is made of hammered copper, the Nautilus is steel, the ocean is painted cement that had to be repainted when its original color turned out to be not ominous enough. Hunt designed it so that one octopus tentacle appears to have snaked under the pavement to emerge several feet away, wrapping itself around a pole at a pedestrian crosswalk.

The Oak Harbor Arts Commission is pleased with sculpture. Oak Harbor's mayor is not, citing the town's adjacent U.S. Navy base as a reason not to have public art of a monster dragging down a submarine. But he was outvoted; the monster will stay.

[RoadsideAmerica.com Team, 04/12/2015]

Nearby Offbeat Places

Flintstone CarFlintstone Car, Oak Harbor, WA - < 1 mi.
Overgrown Ship HulkOvergrown Ship Hulk, Anacortes, WA - 15 mi.
Statue of Statue of "Dirty Biter" the Dog, La Conner, WA - 10 mi.
In the region:
Pearl of the Peninsula Art Park, Quilcene, WA - 34 mi.

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