BALTIMORE (WJZ)—A team is doing all they can to save some endangered whales in the middle of Baltimore City. They’re more than 20 years old and in desperate need of help.

But as Jessica Kartalija reports, not in the way you might imagine.

Chances are you’ve seen the smile before.

But after spending two decades on a wall near M&T Bank Stadium, the Whaling Wall is in desperate need of repair.

“Almost all of the spots were gone when we arrived,” said Charles Lawrence, artist.

Lawrence is part of the team that is “cleaning it up really good and then going back in and trying to get it as tight and as close as we can to the original,” he said.

The California artist Wyland painted the mural back in 1993. Now, 21 years later, the company that owns the building is footing the bill for the renovations.

“We support the message of it as well as for the fact that it’s art for arts sake,” said Al Cunniff, St. John Properties.

Artist Shawn James, owner of Mural Masters, was commissioned to bring the Whaling Wall back to life.

“We washed the entire wall, we chipped away all the loose paint, we put a special bonding primer to stop the paint from chipping more, and now we are putting the color into it,” James said.

Wyland, an environmental artist, painted the mural to raise awareness about whales and the need to save the oceans.

“I think it’s awesome, not only to be part of the bigger picture, but to fix something of this magnitude and of this size,” James said.

The whales and dolphins have endured the elements and some graffiti. Some were completely covered when painters made a mistake, but they’ll be back.

“I’ve been looking at it forever. I’m glad it’s staying,” one person said.

The artist originally wanted to paint the Whaling Wall on the side of the National Aquarium, but that proposal was not approved.

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