Title: Quimper Coho
Artist: Max Grover
Date: April 2002
Location: Removed due to damage from outdoor exposure
Media: Fiberglass Form
Dimensions: 7' long x 2' tall x 12" wide

The Quimper Coho presents the view of the Quimper Peninsula by Max Grover as a separation and combination of Port Townsend and the rural area surrounding it. One side of the enlarged creature depicts the urban waterfront, with distorted images of the Victorian buildings and historic wharfs, while the other projects the natural landscape of evergreen trees, baby salmon and water. A school of salmon swims along the belly of the fish, connecting the sculpture's disparate sides. The inclusion of salmon as the focal point emphasizes the importance of this fish in the Quimper Peninsula community. Originally commissioned by the Port Townsend Main Street Program, Grover created the depicted images after riding the ferry that travels from Port Townsend to Whidbey Island. He paid special attention to how Port Townsend would be seen from the water. Through crafting this sculpture, Grover's appreciation for salmon grew in response to his close inspection of its magnificent shape. This eventually led to the realization of salmon as an incredibly well engineered species. Grover hopes to evoke in others the same emotions and respect for salmon that he now feels. Similar to Southwest Native American storytelling, the Quimper Coho represents the passing on of stories and knowledge.

As one of approximately a hundred salmon sculptures created, the Quimper Coho was part of a large effort, under the directorship of Sara Mall Johani, called Soul Salmon. Soul Salmon's inspiration came from "Cows on Parade" in Chicago and the hundreds of pig sculptures that consumed Seattle for months. In a two and a half year project, Soul Salmon increased awareness of vanishing salmon habitat and populations through public exhibition of salmon sculptures. The project's culmination occurred at the Odyssey Maritime Discovery Museum in Seattle where eleven salmon were auctioned off. Mayor Kees Kolff secured the Quimper Coho, bidding $6,000, with the original intent that it would be installed in the newly constructed City Hall Annex. Before being placed at the Public Library, the sculpture temporarily sat on the Haller Fountain steps.



Quimper Coho