August 18, 2019 #1 Local News, Forum, Information and Event Source for Venice Beach, California.

VIDEO: A Mermaid and Her Muse

6:02am

by Melanie Camp

There’s a mermaid in the Marina. Her name is Yvonne Clark.

4 Mermaid of the Marina
The marina is Clark’s backyard “I will find it very hard to live anywhere else,” she says

She sits aboard her boat in Marina del Rey sipping coffee from a mug that reads, “Work like a Captain, Play Like a Pirate.” Beside her, Sexy McJesus, her two-legged rescue dog wiggles closer for a pat. Two years ago Clark says she was looking for something different. Fresh out of the Navy, her son Nick and his then girlfriend had inherited a small sailboat.

“They said they were going to keep it so that I could live on it, this teeny sail boat, in my old age. I looked at this sailboat and I said, ‘No. that’s not going to work.’ But that got me thinking. I had just come out of a relationship and was looking for a new place. I’d lived in Venice, and the Valley, so I thought why not try something different,” says Clark.

Looking into the move Clark soon discovered it can be tricky getting legal live aboard status in Marina del Rey. “There’s not that many live abroad spots available,” says Clark. There’s also no waiting list. Lucky for Clarke the man who owned the boat she had decided to buy was a live aboard and she was “able to parlay that all into the boat purchase.” She now says she’d “find it very hard to live anywhere else. Unless it’s very unique.”

An afternoon in Clark’s backyard requires firing up the dinghy or jumping on a paddle board. Her neighbors are sea lions and fellow live-aboard boaters.

9 Mermaid of the Marina
“People have a perception that it’s just a bunch of old alcoholic sailors, grumpy, hiding out..” says Clark

“People have a perception that it’s just a bunch of old alcoholic sailors, grumpy, hiding out in their old decrepit boats and that it’s just kind of like a trailer park sort of situation and I think that, hopefully, that perception is changing. The people living here and coming here has changed. I’ve seen it just in a year and a half. Younger people who are just really enjoying everything about the Marina and bringing, kind of like a new life, a new fresh, young feel to it. The way boating is supposed to be. Fun,” she says.

Clark grew up in the Valley and would regularly travel down to Venice to surf. I keep getting drawn back to the ocean…I don’t think I can get any closer than this,” she says.

While her Grandfather did have a sailboat in the Marina when she was younger she says she didn’t have any real experience with boats before she moved aboard her own. “Everyone was running bets as to how long I’d stay. Some bet four months, some six,” says Clark. They all lost their bets but no one seems to mind.

Part-time neighbor Chef David does not live aboard his boat, but when he’s spending the day on his sailboat he’ll paddle across to Clark for a cup of coffee. It was David who gave Clark the idea of using Venice artist Jules Muck to paint the name on Clark’s boat.

5 Mermaid of the Marina
Attack of the Muck in Marina del Rey

Rejecting the notion that a name change brings a boat bad luck, Clarke had chosen the moniker Siren & the Muse for her floating home. While the name was easy, it took almost 18 months for Clark to decide how she would put the new name on her boat.

6 Mermaid of the Marina
Muck mermaid painting in the Marina

“I wanted it to be something special… Chef David, was following Jules Muck he kept showing me her artwork. We thought wouldn’t it be amazing to have her at least paint the name on my boat. Then we thought why not put mermaids on the boat, and then, why don’t we put naked mermaids on the boat,” she says.

3 Mermaid of the Marina
Clarke likens the experience to getting a tattoo, “You get one, you want more. “Now I’m kind of addicted.”

The painting day turned into a party. People came from Venice to the Valley to watch Muck work. “It turned out so beautiful, so amazing, so perfect,” says Clark. She likens the experience to getting a tattoo. You get one, you want more. “Now I’m kind of addicted. I want to put an octopus on the side, going around. A starfish…” she says.

The summer breeze carries a Marina chorus of slapping ropes and water lapping against the hulls of boats. “This is what protesting looks like. I’m protesting the American Dream. This is the American Dream,” says Clarke waving her fingers as a peace sign, as the wind catches her sun-kissed hair. She really does look like a mermaid.

Related Posts

LAPD Apprehends Bio-Hazard Waste Dumping RV Dwellers

October 12, 2010

October 12, 2010

Earlier today the LAPD Pacific Division apprehended the bio-hazard waste dumping RV dwellers that had remained at large with a...

Afternoon Reads 7-15-2014

July 15, 2014

July 15, 2014

Some Venice-related reading for this Tuesday afternoon,  (photo by  Venice Beach Photos): Snapchat reveals geofilters that can only be unlocked...

Afternoon Reads 7-21-2014

July 21, 2014

July 21, 2014

Kind of a beach day today, but here is some light reading from around the interweb for this Monday: Finding...

Pep Williams Signs with Cross Colours

July 24, 2014

July 24, 2014

Old school Venetian Pep reports that he has been brought in as President of the Skate Division for Cross Colours,...

Prayer vigil held for Venice Beach lightning strike victim Nick Fagnano

July 30, 2014

July 30, 2014

Loved ones of Venice Beach lightning strike victim Nick Fagnano gathered Tuesday night at a church in North Hollywood for...

Obituary: Venice Beach lightning strike victim Nick Fagnano “taken to heaven”

July 31, 2014

July 31, 2014 1

A private funeral Mass will be held at a church near Hancock Park this evening for Nicholas Patrick Fagnano, the...

Police issue At-Risk Missing Person alert

July 31, 2014

July 31, 2014

The Culver City Police Department has just issued an urgent “At-Risk Missing Person” alert for Ronald Bruce Jay. He was...

Los Angeles to Combat Illegal Vending on Venice Boardwalk

August 7, 2014

August 7, 2014

Los Angeles will crackdown on what it describes as “illegal vending” on the Venice Beach Boardwalk, as the City Council unanimously...

LAPD: Do Not Be A Victim Of Hot Prowl Burglaries

August 8, 2014

August 8, 2014 2

The Pacific Division of the Los Angeles Police Dept. (LAPD), whose beat includes Venice, issued an advisory this week of...

Save the date: Venice Beach Music Fest returns Saturday, Aug. 23

August 11, 2014

August 11, 2014

Back for its ninth year, Venice Beach Music Fest music and arts festival returns to rock the beach with a...

Venice Beach Welcomes Team Bungalow

August 13, 2014

August 13, 2014 12

The arts scene in Venice Beach just became a little more crowded, as Team Gallery has opened up shop at...

2nd annual Venice trunk show this Saturday

August 15, 2014

August 15, 2014

The Venice trunk show returns this year Saturday, Aug. 16 from 10 am to 5 pm at 1630 Crescent Place....

Venice Skateboarder Jay Adams Dead At 53

August 15, 2014

August 15, 2014

Famed skateboarder, surfer, and Venice native Jay Adams has passed away in Mexico on August 14, it was reported today. He...

Local filmmaker to give free surfing lessons Sunday in Venice

August 16, 2014

August 16, 2014 1

Local filmmaker Gregory Scott is giving free surfing lessons this Sunday, Aug. 17 in Venice at the Rose parking lot...

State Senate Shelves Bill Protecting Beach Bonfires

August 18, 2014

August 18, 2014

Venice beachgoers who head a few miles south to Dockweiler State Beach to participate in the Southern California pastime of...