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From the Bow Seat: Art, Advocacy and Ocean Conservation

May 21, 2017 @ 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm


Come early and participate in a pre-show cleanup event! Find out more here https://www.southfloridaparks.org/event/paddle-clean/

A new exhibition of student art opens this month at Biscayne National Park with 30 winning entries from the Bow Seat Ocean Awareness Program, an annual student art competition organized by a Boston-based non-profit organization. Two of the student winners this year are from South Florida and may join us on Sunday May 21 for the opening reception. Bailey Fleck of Fort Lauderdale (Bailey’s pen and ink drawing Spillage is featured above) and Dana Musso of Boca Raton are both seniors, and both share their thoughts below on the contest and their winning art pieces.

Bow Seat’s annual Ocean Awareness Student Contest challenges middle and high school students from around the world to research, interpret and say something meaningful about the connections between human activities and the health of our oceans through art, poetry, prose or film.

“Through their artwork, the students are expressing how they feel about the planet they are inheriting,” said Program Director Alyssa Irizarry.

The show will be on display through July 30.

Bailey Fleck / Grade 12, Florida / Spillage / Pen and ink

“In my drawing, I chose to depict the consequences of oil spills because it is an issue that is literally very close to home for me. Growing up in South Florida, one of the first times I truly understood the effects big business could have on the environment was during the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. While my hometown borders the Atlantic and not the Gulf of Mexico, where the spill took place, the entire state had concerns over the incident, particularly the effect on local wildlife. As a lifelong animal lover, the situation jarred me in particular. So, my drawing was made to represent the negative and potentially deadly effect of oil on marine life, depicted by showing the healthy-looking body of a fish above water and the skeleton of a fish below oil.”

Dana Musso / Grade 12, Florida / Rare Catch / Acrylic

“I created this piece as a reminder to keep our waters clean if we want life to continue. Water is vital for life, and yet our oceans are being over-fished, polluted, and destroyed. Growing up, I loved ocean animals and I always wished to be a mermaid. That fantasy of swimming through beautiful coral reefs is crushed when I see how soon there won’t be any more beauty left in the sea to swim in. When I was creating this piece, I wanted to incorporate my childhood dream. The mermaid comes from the lost, mythical city of Atlantis and the net represents the pollution and over-fishing. The mermaid is also a symbol of hope because she’s breaking through the net. She is a symbol of people’s efforts to heal the ocean through scientific research, volunteering, and increased awareness. I felt the need to create a piece that best represented my style as an artist, which is taking a serious topic and making it visually beautiful.”


May 21, 2017
1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
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Biscayne National Park
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Dante Fascell Visitor Center, Biscayne National Park
9700 SW 328th Street, Sir Lancelot Jones Way
Homestead, FL 33033 United States
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