Ecology Regattas

Turning beach debris into art

Skeleton Sea artists initiate a beach clean in Abu Dhabi, during the Volvo Ocean race 2011-12. - IAN ROMAN/Volvo Ocean Race

Skeleton Sea artist João Parrinha is looking forward to seeing the creative process unfold once again after another successful beach clean in Abu Dhabi this weekend.

Parrinha has been blown away by the creativity of the children he has worked with so far as part of the Volvo Ocean Race’s campaign to Keep the Oceans Clean!

Skeleton Sea artists initiate a beach clean in Abu Dhabi, during the Volvo Ocean race 2011-12. - IAN ROMAN/Volvo Ocean Race


An 80-strong group of children and adults from Abu Dhabi and the Volvo Ocean Race family took part in the beach clean on Lulu Island on Saturday, collecting the raw materials that will become part of a sculpture during the workshops Parrinha is running starting on Sunday.

“it’s amazing to work with the kids,” said Parrinha after seeing plastic bottles and wrappers and other beach debris added to the haul of materials. “What they do and what they create is very unexpected. They’re very creative people. They go wild creating all these animals and it’s a lot of fun to work with them.

“In the workshops we’ll be making the fish’s scales with the kids. I’ll cut some pieces of net with the shape of a scale and the kids will fill it up, being creative. I’ll then put them on the structure.”

Skeleton Sea artists initiate a beach clean in Abu Dhabi, during the Volvo Ocean race 2011-12. - IAN ROMAN/Volvo Ocean Race


Jacqui Smith, project coordinator for Keep the Oceans Clean!, was also thrilled with the beach clean.

“It was fantastic to see so many people participating in the Abu Dhabi Beach Clean, showing the commitment we have to maintaining the natural beauty of our oceans and beaches,” Smith said.

“With the rubbish haul collected today, our Skeleton Sea artist is well on the way to turning flotsam and jetsam into a stunning sculpture to be created this week at the Destination Village Abu Dhabi. Adults and children alike can get involved in the artistic action by attending the art workshops where they will have the chance to make their own individual contribution to the unique installation.”

On January 9 at 8pm, Parrinha will give a talk on the story behind Skeleton Sea. There will also be an opportunity to watch the short film created by Skeleton Sea called ‘Albatross Exhibitionist’ which tells the compelling story of the thousands of albatrosses that are killed each year because they fatally mistake floating rubbish for food.

The beach clean was successfully coordinated with support from Al Mahara Diving Centre, Abu Dhabi International Marine Sports Club, Environment Agency of Abu Dhabi, CNIA (Critical National Infrastructure Authority), Emirates Diving Association and the Center for Waste Management.



Volvo Ocean Race

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