Meet the Artist
Dr. Jay Sweeney, has worked as a veterinarian in the marine mammal community for 40 years. He is also a founding partner of Dolphin Quest, established in 1988. His experience in the marine mammal field has given him an extraordinary level of detail knowledge for dolphin anatomy and movement. For more than a decade, he has used his expertise and passion about dolphins for creating award-winning wood sculptures using various tropical hard woods.
Jay is a world-renowned expert in marine mammal medicine whose contributions were recognized with the presentation of the International Association of Aquatic Animal Medicine’s prestigious “Excellence in Marine Mammal Medicine” award. Jay is a past president of the Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums, past president of the International Association of Aquatic Animal Medicine, and sits on the board of directors for the Waikoloa Marine Life Fund in Hawaii.
A surfer as a youth in La Jolla, California, Jay’s interest in oceans and ocean life was whetted by his mother, a marine biologist at Scripps Institute of Oceanography. He earned a bachelors degree at San Diego State University before attending the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, graduating as a Veterinary Medical Doctor. Research fellowships at Sea World and an assignment as clinical medicine and research director at the U.S. Navy’s marine mammal program in San Diego followed. Jay began an international consulting practice in aquatic animal medicine in 1972.
As veterinary consultant to Marineland of the Pacific, Jay observed the simple interactions then allowed between dolphins and park guests, noting beneficial aspects for both animals and people. Along with veterinary consulting partner Rae Stone, Jay developed Dolphin Quest in 1988, which now operates two facilities in Hawaii and one each in Bermuda and French Polynesia. Jay’s expert advice is sought by the world’s leading aquatic institutions planning new exhibits and life support systems. He is a lecturer and teacher on marine mammal medicine at universities and colleges of veterinary medicine, author of more than 75 articles and chapters in the scientific literature, and an active member of and presenter at numerous veterinary medical professional associations.
Jay’s long career of interacting and caring for dolphins combined with his artistic prowess has made him the most unique artistic observer creating work in this space.
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The Art of Jay Sweeney © Jay Sweeney, All rights reserved