KEY LARGO, Florida Keys — A colorful series of 4-by-5-foot angelfish created by local artists adorns various Key Largo venues as part of a public arts initiative sponsored by the Key Largo Chamber of Commerce. The initiative’s purpose is to show off the artistic talent in the northernmost island community.
Saturday, Feb. 11, the angelfish and up to 50 other pieces of original artwork are to be displayed and sold at a public auction. Proceeds benefit a Keys charity and each of the participating artists.
A 5-7 p.m. cocktail reception and art preview are planned to kick off the event at the Murray E. Nelson Government and Cultural Center at mile marker (MM) 102 bayside. Viewing is free and bid paddles are available for $10.
Each angelfish is crafted from aluminum and individually themed. Displayed with each work is the artist’s biography and information about the art medium.
Highlight pieces include “Artist’s View of Paradise” by science teacher/artist Carmen Sotolongo-Kelley, a front-and-back design that adorns the entrance to the Key Largo Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center at MM 106. “Secret Spot” by Key Largo artist Taylor Hale adds a colorful twist to the Key Largo Conch House’s outdoor garden eatery at MM 100.2.
“Wyland Angelfish,” located at Marker 88 Restaurant, MM 88, was created by Upper Keys resident Wyland, one of America’s most distinctive marine life artists and creative influences.
Other outdoor bayside angelfish locations include Señor Frijoles restaurant (MM 104), Sundowners on the Bay (MM 103) and Snapper’s Restaurant (MM 94.5).
Visitors also can find angelfish at oceanside locales such as Key Largo Fisheries Market, Marina & Cafe (MM 99), Mrs. Mac’s Kitchen (MM 99.3), Capital Bank (MM 99.6) and Action Marine (MM 102.1).
Visitors can pick up brochures that map the locations of the angelfish at the chamber so they can find and view the bright outdoor art while driving along the Overseas Highway.
The angelfish join a variety of outdoor artistry in the Florida Keys, ranging from murals to offbeat roadside salutes to the region’s abundant marine life — such as a super-sized replica lobster that greets visitors to Islamorada’s Rain Barrel artisans’ village.
Key Largo visitor information: www.fla-keys.com/keylargo or 800-822-1088