This is Richard Beyer. He was a sculptor. Even though he was never formally trained, he created 90 public sculptures during a career that spanned four decades; like this one, "Waiting for the Interurban" in Fremont, and "Feeding the Seagulls" on the Seattle waterfront, and "Tourists with Seagulls on Heads". But of all his sculptures, none are more intriguing, provocative, or controversial than this one: the sculpture on the corner of Marine View Drive and Seventh Avenue in Des Moines.
This is "Big Catch", an R-rated statue in the middle of Seattle Southside.
According to the artist, the sculpture was inspired by a fairy tale wherein a beautiful maiden turned into a fish is saved by the kiss of her fisherman boyfriend. That's what sculptor Richard Beyer was quoted as saying. What he failed to mention was that that fairy tale was completely made up by him. He created this tall tale after the fact to quell the controversy surrounding the statue.
What really inspired him to create this provocative piece of art? We may never know. Maybe he just wanted to give the people of Des Moines something special. Is it art? Is it scandal? Come to the corner of Marine View Drive and 7th Avenue and decide for yourself. "Big Catch", only in Seattle Southside. Visit "Big Catch" in Des Moines.
- Seattle Southside RTA couldn't have developed this program without the support of our community. We would like to thank the following people for their support in the creation of this content:
- Barbara McMichael, SoCo Culture
- Ashley Young, City of Des Moines