With Flipper and Brush: The Oregon Coast Aquarium's Sea Lion Artists
In this episode, Donna launches into a new series on animals and art-making. Her first chat is with Ken Lytwyn, Curator of Marine Mammals at the Oregon Coast Aquarium Their focus: Lea, Max and Quill, the facility’s resident sea lion artists that paint on canvases using their flippers and mouth-held brushes. Ken describes each one's temperaments and talents and details what made these sea lions good candidates for art-making. We hear how they were trained and how they are rewarded for their efforts and we consider what we can know or, perhaps at best, surmise about sea lions from their art-making. Ken also addresses these questions: Do sea lions attach any meaning to their artwork? Do they appreciate beauty? Do they have fun when they engage in these activities? How do sea lions learn and can we relate their learning processes to the ways in which human beings learn? Could a sea lion teach another sea lion to paint?
Max and Lea are featured in the full-color book, Fur in My Paint that shows wild animals – from scorpions to beaded lizards, macaws to elephants, and white tigers to gorillas – all creating art. Next up in this series is Donna’s conversation with the book's author, Tifane Grayce, who shares ideas on teaching our pets to paint.
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