Wednesday 24th July 2013

Blackpill Beach, Swansea, SA1






Artists: Tina-Marie Cunningham, Ami Marsden, Sara Holden, Catrin Jones

Project Photographer: Phil Holden.

The annual sculpture festival at Blackpill Beach was held during the heat wave that has been a feature so far this summer. With high temperatures and a slight breeze, the weather was perfect for sculpting some special sea sculptures from natural materials found on the beach.

The area around Blackpill Lido was full with people from early morning and many of them came over to see what was happening on the beach once they saw the Festival posters, banners and flags. The artists had placed some handmade artworks and weavings around the festival site to inspire participants as well as some information sheets and photos of Welsh marine creatures for reference. Members of the RSPB joined the festival and set up a table with information about the birds of Blackpill to use for ideas for the sculptures too. A theme of Welsh Marine Creatures was given to the artists and participants to create sculptures from sand, pebbles, shells and driftwood. The Leather Backed Turtle and its young was a favourite sculpture that youngsters worked on all day, adding more and more details. Spider crabs, starfish, fish and an enormous sea serpent that became a spiral game for the children were also created during the day. As the sculptures were created, the children and adults found out about characteristics of the marine life, such as their favourite food, how many legs or flippers they had, body markings and identification features.











The artist led workshops were interactive, fun and educational with the children involved in creative play all day. Parents and Grandparents also joined in with the activities and enjoyed having the opportunity of making art with their offspring. The children learnt new techniques and art skills from the artists and enjoyed meeting new friends whilst working together on artworks.





The children's creativity was enhanced by the festival as it guided their play into something more productive. It was also freedom for me to explore my own creativity. We enjoyed the day very much, my son talked animatedly about last year's workshop and didn't want to leave today. Joanna Otteson and 3 children

We made a sea serpent and spiral waterway and were very pleased with the result. The festival had a good community spirit to it and we really enjoyed it. Carrie Thomas and Amy Moores

We made a Merman and an Octopus and were absolutely amazed at the outcome. My son knew a variety of shells by the end of the octopus sculpture. It was an amazing morning and we would definately do it again. Lewis Watkins-Harris and mum

We enjoyed having the opportunity to try new things our in art with guidance. We found the event was both fun and informative. Cerri Good Fellow and 5 children

Our creativity was enhanced through the workshop with the use of different media to make sculptures. The event promoted awareness of the environment. Daisy Wightman and mum

It was a good activity that was very encouraging to the girls. They made a sea horse which looked excellent and promoted care of the beach and marine life. Ellen Neunham and 4 girls

The children were very engaged and they were given lots of ideas to try next time at the beach. It was an excellent well organised event with friendly informative artists. Suzy Richards and 2 children


We made a starfish and a leather backed turtle and it was a good form of engagement for the children. Thank you. Mrs. Harris and 4 children

We were very happy with the jelly fish the children made. the eventwas really enjoyable and we achieved a lot from the session. Stephanie Merry-Evans and 2 children

Our creativfity was enhanced through the help from the artists. We learnt how to pay attention to make the fish more realistic and had loads of interesting information about marine species and birds. Petra Benovicova and four children

We made many sea creatures which the children really enjoyed and it was a great afternoon. Michelle Ratti and 4 children

We were shown how to make a wide of sculptures using different media and techniques by the artists who were well educated and passed environmental information onto the children. Janet Rees and Oliver

We made a leather backed turtle and an edible crab. The artists encouraged us to develop our ideas and gave lots of help with techniques. Katie Pelosi and 3 children

The turtle we made was fab and the kids thoroughloy enjoyed the activity. It was very worthwhile as the children were taught about wildlife, environment and protection. All the artists were very encouraging and creative. Sally-Anne Gates and 2 children


We made a group crab and were very happy with the outcome. The children had a lovely time and learnt lots of new names of shells whilst gathering them to use for decoration. It was aninteresting informative and enjoyable event. A wonderful day - thanks. The Puddleducks Flying Start team and families - 20 people.

We learnt that Leather Backed Turtles are endangered whilst making our large sculpture and made the children more aware of environmental issues. Silvinka and 2 children

It was a fantastic excellent opportunity for the children whose creativity was enhanced by using various found materials and working with the artists. It was excellent and we would definatly attend future events. Sam Rowland, 2 children and 2 adults.

We enjoyed using natural resources to be creative and we learnt about marine species. Events like this are worthwhile as children and adults can tap into their creative side. It was lovely. Freya Carlsen and 3 children.


By the end of the day, a large display of interesting, beautiful and thought provoking sculptures were made for all to see, adorning the sea shore. It had a been a rewarding time for all and the children left the beach having enjoyed a satisfying day making art with the artists.




A good environmental awareness of Blackpill Beach had been achieved and lots learnt about the marine life on the shore. People strolling along the shore enthusiastically photographed their favourite sculptures and admired the hard work of the festival participants.

All Photos by Phil Holden . Copyright Sculpture by the Sea UK 2013

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