Every year, the beaches that line the resort town of Søndervig, Denmark are transformed into a sandy spectacle for the highly-anticipated Søndervig Sand Sculpture Festival. For this year’s edition, artists have been asked to sculpt colossal works of art that exhibit a particularly fitting theme: “life under the sea.”
Spanning aquatic wildlife, underwater civilizations, fantastical figures, and even some particularly popular cartoon characters, the subject matter explored by this year’s participants is simultaneously diverse and cohesive. While most of these creative motifs materialize as 4-meter-tall (~13 feet) stand-alone pieces, some of them appear as a part of the show’s main attraction: a 200-meter-long, 7-meter-tall wall (200 ft. x 30 ft.). Featuring a collection of reliefs, this unique structure offers visitors an unconventional way to experience 3-dimensional sand sculptures.
Established and executed by 43-year-old Karsten Nielsen and Anni Nielsen, his 70-year-old mother, the Søndervig Sand Sculpture Festival started in 2003. In addition to ” immersing both children and adults in a spectacle full of life and adventure,” the festival aims to bring attention to environmental issues through its ongoing collaboration with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). This pairing is particularly well-matched this year, as the festival’s ocean-inspired theme directly “highlights the [WWF] organization’s important work to protect the world’s fish stocks and marine environment.”