At first, there was just the Bird and the Tree was just a little sprout. The Bird could scratch around and find little bits of plants to eat, but because the Bird was unable to fly it could only eat what it could find near to the ground. As the Tree grew, it became more and more difficult for the Bird to get enough to eat.
Then the Rabbit arrived. The Rabbit would eat what was on the ground and would lift the Bird up on his back so the Bird could reach the leaves and fruit of the growing tree. In this way they both had enough to eat. However, the tree continued to grow and soon became to tall for the Bird, even on the back of the Rabbit. Then the Monkey arrived. The Monkey could climb up into the tree and drop the fruit onto the ground for the Rabbit and the Bird. However, it was diffucult for him to get to the fruit at the very top of the Tree. Then the Elephant arrived. With the Elephant, they could reach the fruit at the top of the Tree if they all helped each other. In this way there was plenty for them all to eat.
The reason the four animals worked so harmoniously together, and the reason they were successful, is that none of them were primarily concerned with themselves, but rather with helping their companions get what they needed. Rather than being dominated by selfish concern, they cherished their companions. They were also successful because they were willing to ask for, and receive, help from their friends. In this way, the Bird is considered the hero of the story because it was the most fragile, needed the most help and was willing to ask for it. Because the others were happy to help the Bird, they are known throughout times as the Four Harmonious Friends.
Four Friends Gallery of Thousand Oaks specializes in vintage and fine art photography and its “Outsider Art”. The Broken Oak Gallery, successor to the Gold Coast Center Gallery, was founded in March 2005 by photographer, Larry Janss as a place to exhibit his and others works in a small, intimate and informal space. The Gallery derives its name from the eponymous broken oak tree that stands stately in front of the building in which the gallery resides.
Four Friends Gallery holds a wide range of events, from concerts to fundraisers. The Gallery is also available to be rented by individuals or group looking to hold:
*Intuit, the Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art, defines “intuitive and outsider art,” as work of artists who demonstrate little influence from the mainstream art world and who seem instead motivated by their unique personal visions. This includes what is known as art brut, nontraditional folk art, self-taught art, and visionary art.