Sand art is the practice of modeling sand into an artistic form, such as sand brushing, sand sculpture, sandpainting, or sand bottles. Traditionally, sand sculptures are sandcastles, a type of sand sculpture resembling a miniature building, but as the name suggests, it’s often a castle.
However, in sand festivals there can virtually be any kinds of sculptures you would expect to see in stone, bronze or wood.
What do you need to build sand sculptures? The basic main ingredients are sand (of course) and water, which are readily available on a beach. Sand that is said to be of good for shaping should have some silt and clay in it to help hold the sand together. If the sand is really fine, it would be hard to stick together.
So what happens when you mix the correct amounts of sand and water? The water allows the sand to stick together because of surface tension.
So you’ve got sand and water. Of course, you need some construction tools. Shovels and buckets are usually used even though there are people who like to use their hands.
To build a standard sandcastle, a bucket is filled with wet sand and placed upside-down on your site of choice. Remove your bucket and there you have your first structure. Using more buckets filled with seawater will help for larger-scale work as it would bring down travel time every time you need more water. Some people go as far as to use other materials like plastic and wood (they call it forms) to hold these piles of sand in place or to shape it into something more specific.
But that is something everyone does right? What’s the point of this article?
Well, here is what I want to highlight. There are some people that go far and beyond the usual sandcastle. Sand festivals or festivals of sand sculptures are exhibitions that are simply extraordinary. Recently in Saint Petersburg, Russia, a sand festival was held, The Sand Sculptor Festival 2019, from 25th May to 8th September (Фестиваль Песчаных Скульптур 2019 “Затерянные миры). The theme was ‘Lost Worlds’. The exhibition covered 4000 square meters and 3000 tonnes of sand was brought for the building of sand sculptures.
Have a look at some of these awesome creations.
For a long time, the festival is a highlight of St. Petersburg. The International Sand Sculpture Festival is found in the heart of the city, on the beach near the Peter and Paul Fortress. It’s like a huge workshop and world-class sculptors from around the world were there forming beautiful and intricate works of art entirely from sand.
Here are some highlights from previous year sand sculptures in the festival.
Locals and tourists alike gathered there to watch on the banks of the Neva, surrounded by the panoramic views of the Hermitage and the Rostral Columns. It would be a place to visit for a holiday or perhaps a romantic honeymoon trip. I think have some spare cash hidden under my mattress, or at least I should start saving for next year’s trip.