An aluminum cut-out of a Roosevelt elk sits outside the Port Angeles Fine Arts Center, part of the “Conservation From Here” exhibit that includes original art by Joseph Rossano. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

An aluminum cut-out of a Roosevelt elk sits outside the Port Angeles Fine Arts Center, part of the “Conservation From Here” exhibit that includes original art by Joseph Rossano. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Elk installation appears at fine arts center

PORT ANGELES — The aluminum cut-outs of Roosevelt elk herds that have appeared on Olympic National Park visitor centers have also settled at the Port Angeles Fine Arts Center.

The installation that appeared at the Olympic National Park Visitor Center in Port Angeles and at the Hoh Rain Forest Visitor Center in early April will be available for viewing through Labor Day, while the elk artwork at the art center at 1203 E. Lauridsen Blvd., which were installed Saturday, will be on display through Aug. 1.

The elk are part of Conservation From Here, an exhibit that includes original art by Joseph Rossano inspired by historical artifacts from Sagamore Hill, the home of Theodore Roosevelt.

“The elk are cut from shining recycled aluminum and the reflections we see in them — of ourselves and our surroundings — are a reminder that we can all be conservationists in our own way, wherever we are,” said Penny Wagner, park spokesperson, in a press release.

Roosevelt elk are named after Teddy Roosevelt and are a living legacy of a celebrated conservationist, Wagner said.

By 1909, the Roosevelt elk herds had shrunk dramatically and were hitting critical levels for survival. Using the Antiquities Act, President Roosevelt redesignated 615,000 acres of the Olympic Forest Reserve as Mount Olympus National Monument in an effort to preserve the native habitat of the elk herds. Today, Olympic National Park is home to the largest unmanaged herd of Roosevelt elk in the Pacific Northwest.

“All wildlife is protected in the park. So, while you can get close to the artwork to capture that perfect image, always observe Roosevelt elk from a distance. Keep at least 50 yards (half the length of a football field) between you and any park wildlife,” Wagner said.

For more information on the exhibit and the artist, Joseph Rossano, visit conservationfromhere.org.

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