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Fish #182 Skipjack Tuna Katsuwonus pelamis ~ Wendy Ronaldson
Acrylic 41 x 51 cm
Skipjack Tuna are also known as the Katsuwonus Pelamis a medium sized perciform fish in the tuna family Scombridge. Skipjack can grow to a length of 3 feet and can live as long as 8-10 years and are the most abundant of the major commercial tuna species. They have streamlined bodies and are almost scale less. They have a wonderful dark purple-blue back and their lower sides and bellies are silver with four to six dark bands. They are found mainly in the tropical areas of the Atlantic, India and Pacific Oceans with the greatest abundance near the equator. At night skipjack are surface swimmers and by day they can dive up to 850 feet. Large schools of adult skipjack tuna often mix with juvenile yellowfin and bigeye tuna. They may also show a characteristic behaviour like jumping, foaming, feeding, etc. Skipjack tuna eat varies prey, including squids, small fishes, crustaceans and other vertebrates, cannibalism is also common. They rely on their speed to outwit and bite prey as they have no suction power. Skipjack tuna spawn throughout the year in the tropics and eggs are released in several bouts, although widespread and heavily fished skipjack tuna is not a conservation risk.
The origin of the name skipjack tuna was first described in 1758 by Carl Linnaeus who named it Scomber Pelamis. The species name is derived from Latin, meaning, 'Tunny' which refers to fish. There was a big-game tunny club founded in 1933 in Scarborough which had its headquarters there. The Atlantic Bluefin tuna known as tunny in Britain at the time is a large and powerful fish which was a target for big game fishermen.
Skipjack tuna sits at the back of the leader board when it comes to artists depictions of tuna fish. Yellowfin tuna seems to be the most popular among artists. Its yellow fins, tail along and the anal fins which can grow very long in mature species are aesthetically beautiful; their bright colour brings sunshine with sleek elegance almost too good to eat. I never really thought of tuna fish as a living creature, I always saw it as canned food. Delicious as it is, I never quite see it in the same way now I have been to The Deep in Hull. I was mesmerised by them, I spent hours watching and photographing the tuna swimming by in those huge glass tanks. I wanted to take them home with me, transport the tank and sit it in the living room so I could watch them all day. My friend had to ask me politely to leave as her feet were aching. That is why I chose skipjack tuna for the project.
Wendy Ronaldson, 1964- Lincolnshire born artist working in mixed media Studying for a BA Fine Art Degree at Grimsby University Centre I am a hands on person, very creative; this is driven by the fact that I have a covert stammer. There are two types of stammer, Covert and overt. A stammer is a dysfluency which includes blocks, repetitions and prolongations. A covert stammer uses avoidance techniques, swapping words, omitting words avoiding social situations to avoid disclosure. Overt stammering has obvious blocks, repetitions and prolongations. I was self-taught until 2013 and after speech therapy took the huge step of studying and never looked back. I work from Life experiences and find the human connection fascinating. Speech and the interaction between verbal and non-verbal communication plays a huge part in my creative processes. My work ranges from film installation to paintings and sculpture, experimenting is my foremost desire to reach my end goal. I have work in private collections locally and internationally and exhibit in and around Lincolnshire.
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