Flickering Shores, Sea Imaginaries, this year’s edition of the Sea Art Festival, is inviting us to rethink our relationship with the sea, referring to the beauty but at the same time, the fragility of our shores, and exploring alternative frameworks and visions for engaging with the ocean and marine environments.
            The sea is deeply embedded in our lives and capitalist society, a vital source for our survival, but also a vast industry we exploit for food, medicines, energy, minerals, trading, travel and so on. But increased human activity, from extensive cruise tourism, shipping and overfishing to nuclear testing, pollution and deep-sea mining have been plaguing the sea, having a huge impact on marine ecosystems and habitats.
            Instead of viewing the sea from the coast as a divided and abstract surface for moving around commodities, Flickering Shores, Sea Imaginaries reminds us that we are part of this body of water. This year's Sea Art Festival aims to explore new relationships with the sea and its ecologies, enabling spaces for cooperation, collective visions and synergies as a call to resistance and restoration.
Flickering Shores
Sea Imaginaries


Atelier NL

                                            Atelier NL, which was founded by Nadine Sterk and Lonny van Ryswyck, is a design studio celebrating the richness of the earth and the value of local raw materials. The two artists reshape raw earth elements into everyday objects, reflecting the subtleties of the natural world. Notably, their Clay and Glass project uses locally sourced clay for ceramics and wild sands for glassmaking. This honors cultural heritage and promotes sustainable design. Atelier NL inspires appreciation for our planet’s resources, advocating responsible sourcing and production to foster global environmental consciousness. Their passion-driven research creates tangible connections between humanity and nature, calling for a renewed sense of stewardship for our precious earth.                                                                                    

Yun Pil Nam

                                            Based in Busan, Yun Pil Nam has participated in eight solo exhibitions and more than 50 group exhibitions at leading art institutions in Korea. By moving from the flat surface to three dimensions, Yun strives to express a world of art that goes beyond the superficial boundaries of painting, which can bind the past, present, and future together. Since 2016, she has been particularly interested in installation art and has also participated in creating theater costumes and public art projects.                                                                                    

Cho Eun-Phil

                                            Cho Eun-Phil uses blue as her main sculptural element to transform everyday materials into extraordinary and surreal spaces. With Cho, her blue is not just a color of physical materials; for her, each and every material is changed to blue and transformed into an illusionary space and a space of meaning. Her installations are a fundamental experiment about site-specificity and a challenge to it. These spaces allow not only the viewer but also the artist herself to experience unfamiliar moments. Recently, Cho has been working on a residency at Clayarch Gimhae Museum, with a particular interest in plant forms that change over time. She will be exhibiting at the Hangang Sculpture Project this year and at the Ichihara Lakeside Museum in Japan next year.                                                                                    

Jacob Hurwitz-Goodman & Daniel Kelle


Emma Critchley

                                            Emma Critchley is an artist who uses water as a formal material property in a range of media, including film, photography, sound, installation, and dance. Her work explores the underwater environment as a political, philosophical, and environmental space, and has been shown extensively nationally and internationally in galleries and institutions, including the official Italian pavilion of the Venice Architecture Biennale 2021. Her current project, Soundings, explores how film, sound, and dance might be used to connect us with the deep ocean to help foster the meaningful connection needed to inspire care for the deep sea and its ecosystems.                                                                                    


Fish kissed

                                        How are marine environments connected with our urban homes and traditions?

Fish kissed is a short film that explores the often distant, but intimate relationship between the urban human home and the ocean. The narrative is taking place entirely over a kitchen sink, featuring a traditional island song by the renowned Domna Samiou choir in Greece.

The film presents two main characters, a woman and a sea urchin, whose relationship seems to be based on a parallel co-domestication process. Fish kissed examines both the physical connection between human spaces and marine ecosystems and their cultural connection, for example through references of food preparation, traditional song, eco-news and climate worries, or the practice of ichthyomancy (a divination by means of the heads or the entrails of fishes) and biopsy, to foresee the future. The film examines the juxtaposed perception of the sea as a “trophos” - a pleasure, resource and nutrition provider - and waste ground, the cultural stylization of the marine ecosystem mostly by the tourism and energy sectors, and the future of the oceans.                                    

Ilgwang Swing

Mongjoo Son
                                        Finally, I breathe deeply facing Ilgwang Beach. This is a moment when you encounter a space that invites you to relax and let go, forgetting about tension and time.

Mongjoo Son’s Ilgwang Swing is such a space; a swing pavilion made of objects found in Busan and Ilgwang that invites visitors to interact with it and feel liberated. The artist, having collected objects that usually float on the sea, has stacked them together to create the swing pavilion structure, which is made to look like it’s breathing, inhaling, and exhaling. She portrays the constant movement of the buoy as the movement of a swing. And she invites visitors to move along with this breathing, inhaling and exhaling as they use the swing.

Mongjoo Son creates this swing for adults in particular (although children are also welcome to use it), as adulthood often means the end of play that brings joy, stimulates our imagination, and helps us adapt and solve problems. Play can also connect us to others, and Mongjoo Son’s swing here enables us to take our feet off the ground and reality for a while to feel like floating, and move along with the sea.

Mongjoo Son’s large-scale and dramatic structures offer a reimagining of fluidity while enabling us to imagine new stories around a place. Ilgwang Swing becomes such a space inviting us to connect with and reimagine stories about the sea.                                    

Traces of the Waves

Ari Bayuaji
                                        What if we were able to transform immense quantities of plastic objects found on our shores into valuable material?

Traces of the Waves is a new art installation, which forms part of the artist’s ongoing Weaving the Ocean art project series. In this project series, artist Ari Bayuaji transforms plastic waste into textile art, often made in collaboration with artisans.

The site-specific installation, created for this year’s Sea Art Festival, and situated alongside the wooden pathway next to Ilgwang Beach, has been constructed using thousands of plastic threads unraveled from plastic ropes found on beaches and the coast in Bali (Indonesia), as well as found plastic objects gathered from shorelines in Busan (South Korea).

Colorful plastic ropes, which are used for fishing nets, are often found washed up on our coastlines across the world in large quantities. Many times, they are entangled with marine life such as corals, or wrapped around vegetation on the beaches and beyond. But apart from plastic ropes, every year, we produce and consume over 400 million tons of plastic. From these plastic objects, we consume and throw away, about at least 14 million tons end up in the ocean every year, being carried away across the waters. Many of these plastic objects end up along our shorelines and plastic makes up almost 80% of all marine debris, from sea surface waters to deep-sea sediments.

Traces of the Waves addresses pressing environmental and social issues such as the immense pollution of our oceans and its consequences, the destruction of marine life, and the loss of the coastlines’ natural beauty. Bayuaji - working in collaboration with communities and artisans - goes through a meticulous process of collecting little by little plastic ropes and other plastic objects found on the beach, washing these materials several times, and separating them until they are transformed into usable fine threads that can be woven into textiles or used in his art installations such as this one.

This long process becomes a collaborative, caring and conciliatory effort that transforms an insignificant and cheap plastic object that pollutes our waters, giving it a new life as a useful and valuable artistic material. A devastating and negative impact on the environment becomes a “positive” outcome, drawing on collectivity and common endeavor, while celebrating craftsmanship. At the same time, Bayuaji pays homage to his Indonesian culture and textile traditions, but also the importance and role of the sea, which is right to the center of Balinese culture, philosophy, spirituality and rituals.

As one walks through the Traces of the Waves path, colorful strands and tufts of plastic threads can evoke forms of marine creatures like jellyfish and corals or the feel of seaweed strands and sea grasses moving in the waters.                                    

Floating Fragments

Seema Nusrat
                                        What is the impact of our accelerated urban and suburban development on the environment, nature and heritage? How much more can urban development expand into natural habitats without disturbing the equilibrium?

Today, the world’s population is three times larger than in the mid-twentieth century, and in November 2022, the globe’s population reached 8 billion people. With increasing numbers of people also comes an inevitable growth and growing demand for urban development, and while cities become densely populated, they expand into rural peripheries.

Floating Fragments serves as a commentary on the swift and uncontrolled growth of urban development. With an increasing demand for space to accommodate a fast-growing population, the expansion of cities has not only disturbed the delicate equilibrium of natural habitats but it has also obscured our cultural heritage.

The artwork draws inspiration from local architecture, and in particular traditional roof tiles, presenting us with a partially submerged roof over water, and creating an unsettling perspective. This prompts us to reflect on the current trajectory we are navigating, highlighting the discord between urban development and the preservation of nature and heritage.

The artwork also calls attention to the risk of flooding, the impact of which is being felt in many areas and communities across the world, and is likely being exacerbated by climate change. As we continue to warm the planet with greenhouse gas emissions, and water warms and expands, and as sea levels rise, the frequency and intensity of extreme flood events,                                    

How to Become Wholesome

Kasia Molga
                                        Would you adapt your body to “serve” marine ecosystems and keep aquatic organisms healthy?

How to Become Wholesome investigates how bodily waste, in the broadest sense (tears, sweat, and urine), may contribute towards the wellbeing of aquatic organisms.

Extending from Kasia’s renowned installation How to Make an Ocean, where the artist collected and analyzed the chemical composition of human tears in order to feed tiny marine ecosystems, this work poses a series of questions such as: How to care for one's own body so that it becomes the most nutritious for a marine ecosystem? What tools are needed to harvest those nutrients from the human body? How do we test harvested substances for their suitability? What are the aesthetics of this process and of developing connections between the human body and the ocean?

The ongoing research behind this project is presented in a series of records and tools. Diet diaries and records of the chemical composition of Molga’s bodily secretion (Records of Transforming into Resource); a series of sketches of tools for helping to harvest nourishment from bodily waste (Tools for Harvesting Nourishment); and invented for purpose lab instruments.

Most importantly, at the heart of the current edition of this installation, are 3 to 4 interconnected water tanks. In these tanks, water made out of various bodily sources mixes with seawater, influencing the growth and nourishing the development of specially selected aquatic plants.

How to Become Wholesome draws a parallel between the wellbeing and survival of the human body with that of non-human species and reminds us that we are very much part of nature and the ocean, not a separate entity.                                    

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