“Nick Mann Painting His Story of Sturgeon Mural,” 2013, 12×24, oil on canvas.
I was grateful for the generosity of Nick Mann, AKA “Doodles,” who allowed me to paint “en plein air” as he worked to complete his mural about the story of the sturgeon. His mural is one of several that are part of “The Wooster Collective: The Sheboygan Project” sponsored by the John Michael Kohler Art Center in Sheboygan.
As we both took a break in our work, Nick told me the story behind the mural. It tells of the sturgeon, one of the oldest known fish. They used to thrive in Lake Michigan. But because of overfishing and human development along the rivers where they spawn, their population has dramatically decreased. But even now, there are attempts to restore the habitats and repopulate the lakes with this ancient fish. Nick also said that in some native spirituality, the Sturgeon is a symbol of life’s enduring and regenerating strength. Because of that, in the mural, Nick imagined the four seasons of life in the interconnected circles… a sign of life’s evolving strength. Thanks, Nick, for sharing your creativity with our community!