A day at the beach...

by - Thursday, July 04, 2013

Sand and water... Bucket and shovel...  And imagination...
Perhaps an ordinary visit to the beach for you might include a picnic lunch, under the shade of a striped umbrella, with a good summer read or Ipod in tow. This is usually the case when we venture down to Sandy Hook for an afternoon in the sun. But for some hardcore artists, this is the prime time to showcase their unique talents. The sand presents a mere tool for vast creation, inviting endless possibilities to mold majestic statuary, transforming the terrain therein. This year's World Championship of Sand Sculpting, hosted on by The Atlantic City Alliance in New Jersey was extended until July 4th, showing off an assemblage of creators larger than life. Literally! Let's see some winners from this year, "a brilliant mix between engineering and artwork" (Rusty Croft, Sand Guys International). It's hard to believe all are formed with just sand and water - no power tools, no molds - and can last for days, weathering  the elements from a simple spray of water and school glue as permitted by the authorities for each show.

First place winner in the singles division was Karen Fralich from Ontario, Canada, with "Amazon's Pet".

Sculptures are carefully carved with only manual tools allowed - butter knives, trowels, spoons, forks, straws, or anything to add details as designed.

Brian Turnbough from Illinois teamed with Joo Heng Tan who traveled all the way from from Singapore to create this first place winner in the doubles division called "The Charge of the Achilles".

Atlantic City isn't the only place for sandy happenings. The 2013 Master Sand Sculpting Competition was held on New Hampshire's Hampton Beach where some amazing work also emerged from the grains.

First place winner, "Infinity" by Carl Jara from Ohio.

This second place winner is named "Phasing" done by Guy-Olivier Deveau of Quebec, Canada. 

This is one of my favorites, "Mirror, Mirror" by Karen Fralich, of Ontario, Canada, garnering fourth place. 

Taking this art across the globe, international competitions are popular as well. In Denmark, here is the artist's "Eagle Dance" with Marjon Katerburg herself. In this photo, you can see the colossal scale!

In Rorschach, Switzerland, "Hand to Mouth" is creative and vexing for the viewers passing by.

In Latvia, sand was captured in an actual bar sculpture, serving up drinks in a sight for admiration.

This is only the beginning! There are numerous sand sculpture competitions and shows all over the US, running throughout the summer months and fall, continuing well into December in the southern regions of Florida. Yes, a simple day at the beach can be a master artist's canvas... xoxo-Sonya

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