FIRST PLACE SOLO COMPETITION: Jonathan Bouchard, Back Bone of Life: Tribute to Bio Diversity, Canada. Photo: Courtesy of World Championship of Sand Sculpting in Atlantic City
ATLANTIC CITY, NJ— After weeks of sculpting, scrapping and carving, the World Championship of Sand Sculpting in Atlantic City came to an end with the announcement of this year’s winners. This year’s event brought together sand sculpture artists from all over the world. They came from Germany, Australia, Canada, London, Unite States, United Kingdom, Norway, Russia, Singapore, India, Italy and other parts of the globe. While many have won different sand sculpture contests, others were engaging in this artistic adventure for the very first time. Even then, their works were of very high standard.
With a total prize purse of $75,000, sculptors were at their best. Considered the sand sculpting World Cup, many of the sand sculpture ideas presented at this year’s event were exceptional. There were sculptures of castles, mermaids, animals and toys. The concepts were endless, and in some instances, breathtaking. Simple as some of them seemed, it was clear from all the sand sculpting techniques explored by the sculptors, that a lot of skill is necessary to create these complex masterpieces.
Prizes were awarded for first through 20th place. There were also prizes for Sculptor’s Choice and People’s Choice. The first place in the solo event went to Jonathan Bouchard of Canada for Back Bone of Life: Tribute to Bio Diversity. His prize for creating this outstanding sculpture was $4,800. The second place went to Pavel Mylnikov of Russia for Painting Comes to Life: Daydreaming Little Girl. She won $2,800. In third place was Rusty Croft of the United States, who won $2,600 for In the Eye of the Beholder. Jonathan Bouchard of Canada won the Sculptor’s Choice award. Voted by other competitors as their favorite, Bouchard’s Back Bone of Life: Tribute to Bio Diversity won him$1,000. The People’s Choice went to Sudarsan Pattnaik from India, whose work Save Trees, Save Your Children, Save the Future from Global Warming captivated the audience.
The Doubles Competition was as intense as the Solo. In the end, the first place went to Mélineige Beauregard and Jonathan Bouchard of Canada, who won $7,000 for Memory Sticks. Pavel Mylnikov & Aleksei Diakov of Russia came second, winning $5,600 for the piece titled Timeless Story. The third place went to Jooheng Tan of Singapore and Peter Vogelaar of Canada for The Diving Horse. They won the $5,200 prize. The Sculptor’s Choice went to Mélineige Beauregard and Jonathan Bouchard of Canada, whose intriguing and intricately carved Memory Sticks, won them the $2,000 prize money. The audience was unanimous in selecting Spheres of Influence by Rusty Croft & Matt Long of the USA as the People’s Choice. They won $2,000 prize.
The Atlantic City Beach at Pennsylvania Avenue was packed full of tourist, travelers and inhabitants who had come to see the amazing sand art. To capture the moment, many came armed with their digital cameras, tablets and cell phones. Just as they took pictures of the sand sculptures, they also took pictures of themselves and friends standing in front of some of the sand sculptures. Some even showed off sand sculpture pictures they took last year during the annual event.
For those who came when the event opened on June 6, they got the opportunity to learn about sand sculpture techniques. They got sand sculpture tips from sculptors who provided them with practical information they could not have found in any book. Many of the spectators also learned about sand sculpture tools and how to use them.
Although the World Championship of Sand Sculpting in Atlantic City is an annual contest for the best sand sculptors from around the world, for audience and art lovers who attend however, it should be categorized as a sand sculpture festival. Beside the sand art and all the sculpting, there were games, music, and many fun activities for all those who attended. Here are some of the entries for this years art competition.