Monday, May 9, 2016

2016 Fulong International Sand Sculpture Festival (福隆國際沙雕藝術節) - Fulong Beach [Taiwan Day 981: Sand Republic - May 8, 2016]


It's the time of the year again that people flock to a famous beach in Northern Taiwan. The 2016 Fulong International Sand Sculptor has been opened since May 7 attracting local and international visitors to see different golden structures. It was my third time to see this event and this year was a bit different from my past two visits. There were flags that kept dancing in the wind helping spectators identify the nationality of their favorite sand artists. These sculptors have come from the different parts of the world from the United States of America to Europe and then to Asia. Was there a participant from your country? Let’s find out.

 “Can we see through?”

“Demons”

“The Wendigo”

Canadians will be at the top of our list. Melineige Beauregard won 1st place on this year’s Taiwan World Sand Sculpting Championship with her “Can we see through?” sculpture. Lovers entangled in strings representing bad and good experiences in a relationship captured the hearts of judges in the competition. Only the eyes of the lovers can be seen in her work and they were looking at each other. Eye to eye, heart to heart. While Beauregard portrayed love, other Canadians showed the scary side of life. Marc Lepires’ “Demons” and Guy Olivier Deveau’s “The Wendigo” brought life to creatures that we pray not to see in our dreams at night.

“Spring Plumage”

“Think…Reduce…Reuse…Recycle!"

The land of the free had also sent its participants. Kirk Rademaker’s “Spring Plumage” featured the act of the birds when it spread its wings to attract a mate during spring time. Another American, Dan Doubleday believed that the octopus is the most intelligent creature in the ocean. He was fascinated with its IQ and also its ability to change color through mimicry. It was impossible for him to behave like an octopus so he created one and sent it to Taiwan. John Gowdy showed his love for Mother Earth with his “Think…Reduce…Reuse…Recycle!". He used the festival as an opportunity to remind everyone to care for the environment especially our oceans.

"Flora"

“Life Music"

Europe’s best sand artist also created sculptures for the annual event. We all know that The Netherlands is a country of beautiful of flowers and it was not surprising to see a sand sculpture depicting the Roman goddess of flowers, fertility and spring which is "Flora". Wilfred Stijger’s “Life Music” was an amazing sculpture. Life was compared to an accordion and according to him our whole journey on this Earth was like a music. We have our ups and downs as we grew up like musical notes that also goes up and down on a composition. We started our life song at our birth and we will end it with our death once we played the last key of our own music.

“Fat Mermaid”

 “In the Center of the Cyclone”

How about seeing a “Fat Mermaid”? Pedro Mira from Portugal imagined the mythical sea creature as a plus-size mermaid representing the greed of humans feeding from the weakness of others. Mother Russia will always be a proud mom to its citizens. Her son Dmitrii Klimenko created the sculpture “In the Center of the Cyclone” which takes visitors back to a time when a storm ravaged his town

“Wisdom King”

“Cows and Global Warming”

There were also entries from other countries like Latvia, Czech Republic and France but let us not forget Taiwan. Various artist from around the island also joined the fun for this yearly event. They have a different source of inspiration and I enjoyed taking photos of their creations. Some of the Taiwanese sand artworks that I saw were the “Wisdom King” of Yeh Kun-Peng and the “Cows and Global Warming” of Fang Zhi-Da. 


 “Taiwan’s Night Market”



 “Taiwan Scooter”


“Sky Lantern”

 “Taiwan’s First Female President”

But the art installations that attracted the most in the festival where the daily scenes and different tourist attractions in the island. Are you hungry? Why not go to “Taiwan’s Night Market” and imagine yourself eating street food made up of sand. Ride a “Taiwan Scooter” to reach Pingxi and then send a “Sky Lantern” to the heavens. Congratulations to president-elect Tsai for being “Taiwan’s First Female President”. She will become the most powerful woman in the Chinese-speaking world once she starts her duty.









The festival will last until July 10 but be there before it’s gone! How go to Fulong Beach? Just take any train going to Fulong Station and from there you can walk to reach the beach. There is an entrance fee worth NTD 100 and it was very cheap. Enjoy the sand sculptures there and spread the news to your friends and loved ones. Show them your passport of happiness and tell them that you have enjoyed your stay in the sand republic.
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