Uncle Art

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22″ x 30″ original pastel painting “Uncle Art” matted and framed.


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Meet my neighbor, Arthur Wongdock who is part Hawaiian, Chinese, Cherokee, and Irish. Art is a living legend who served nine terms in the Navy and Vietnam and worked 10 years removing explosives from Kaʻahulawe. As an expert diver and marine mammal operator, he trained dolphins, seals, and whales to retrieve bombs from the ocean. Art embraces life with Aloha and can frequently be spotted at Hoʻokipa Beach Park greeting tourists while keeping a watchful eye on the sea turtles. I wanted to capture his true nature by conveying the idea of the light within him as well as the morning light at Hoʻokipa on his long gray hair. He wears his black leather biker vest, the shark’s tooth and pig tusk almost everywhere he goes. Each item he wears reveals his rich, vividly recalled history that serve as an opportunity for talking story. This piece was juried into the 2015 Schaefer Portrait Challenge.

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