WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- If you've driven on North Flagler Drive near Good Samaritan Medical Center you likely noticed something is missing. A brightly colored sculpture of a fish. The iconic work of art was hit by a car early in the morning of January 16. The artist behind the 'Fish out of Water' sculpture, Mark Fuller , picked up the fish and it's been in a Riviera Beach warehouse ever since.
"This is the impact zone of the car where it smashed the bottom," Fuller explained. "It just broke all the welds on the bottom, as you can see on the bottom part of the tail."
The crash bowed the much loved fish inside and out. "The exterior of it, the welds really took a big hit," said Fuller. "The spindle shaft in the middle is slightly bent so that needs to be trued or rebuilt. As well as the bearings that are in there and the bearing blocks. There's a lot of mechanics inside of this."
And the damage isn't limited to just one side. "Then on this side, again the impact just burst all the weld seams around the side then down at the bottom here so you can see," Fuller detailed. "I imagine it cried when this happened."
Fuller says the sculpture with the body of a fish and wings of an angel will take time to repair and is not a total loss. "The paint is one of the most difficult parts," Fuller said. The sides of the fish blend sea green and sky blue, a nod to when the area was a World War II seaplane base. Nose to tail Fuller smoothly mixed bright yellow and orange, symbolizing the early morning and late day sun. "Doing the blending and all, it's difficult and time consuming so the finishing work is where it's at," Fuller added. "Some parts will be totally replaced and other parts will just be refinished. A lot of it needs to be re-welded and new parts put on."
Fuller said he submitted a proposal to the city on what it's going take to get 'Fish Out of Water' back out to its home along the Intracoastal Waterway. Now he just has to wait.
"We can fix it," Fuller said with confidence.