Ocean State Tackle To Get The Crenca Treatment

I would not normally allow a Yankee fan to throw gang signs at me, but this is Dave Henault, owner of Ocean State Tackle, and he has some fun news to share. We first got to know Dave when covering the first day of trout season every spring, and soon found out that everyone knows Dave whether they fish or not. And one of his oldest friends is artist Bert Crenca (of Divine Providence fame) who has decided to do something about that fading trout image on the store’s facade. Dave announced yesterday on social media:

The 15-ft striped bass that has been a symbol of Ocean State Tackle for decades is being prepared for repainting. I am pleased and honored that my good friend Umberto Crenca has offered his talent and time to recreate the iconic image.

Work should begin next week. Mr. Crenca may not fish, but he sure knows how to paint. His ‘Divine Providence’ series has been a revelatio, and many locals now have original art in their homes and offices. This direct intervention on the front of the shop is not even the first time Crenca has been inspired by this unique building: Divine Providence #29 is now in the collection of the RISD Museum.

Update on the health front: Dave’s friends have also been following him on Facebook for updates on his medical situation. As reported in the ProJo last November, Dave is in line for a kidney transplant up at Mass General. Happily, a family member is a good match and is ready to donate. The doctors have asked Dave to lose a little more weight — he has knocked off several pounds already — and then they will schedule this surgery.

Dave is very optimistic, and getting that trout fixed up is part of that optimism. He wants everyone to know that he aims to get well and keep this shop up and running for years to come.

Open every day 5am to 6pm, Ocean State Tackle, 430 Branch Avenue, (directions)


The original striped trout was executed by Dave’s now ex-wife, an artist, and it really popped. But it had been vandalized a while ago and the ensuing attempt to fix it had not been so great. It needs to pop again and Mr. Crenca is the man for the job.

Below is that intermediate trout version with Sukha, Dave’s beloved sidewalk superintendent. It just never came together.


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