Amusing Monday: Sand takes on spectacular shapes

Some amazing works of art were produced this year for the World Championship of Sand Sculpting, held from Aug. 18 to Sept. 5 in Federal Way.

This sand sculpture called True Color by Joo Heng Tan won first place in the singles division at the World Championship of Sand Sculpting in Federal Way. / Photo courtesy of Flint Weiss

The event draws winners from regional contests throughout the United States and even from other countries. The contest is said to attract the world’s top sand sculptors.

Amateur photographer Flint Weiss of Maple Valley attended the event this year. I found Flint’s photos on his Flickr page, and he agreed to create a slideshow to give us a flavor of the event. Click here for the slideshow.

Flint, who manages teams of software developers for a large tech company, says he enjoys public art, as well as art made from common objects, which helps people feel more connected to the artist’s creation.

“I do feel that art is enriching and that everybody is capable of producing some,” he wrote in an e-mail. “One of the things I like about sand sculpture is how solid and crisp everything looks, when it is really only made from sand.

“That makes sculptures like these feel somewhat improbable, making them all the more impressive. I also really enjoy the sheer artistry involved. While it’s easy for me (or any of us) to take a trowel to a pile of sand, it never looks anything like what these folks do.

“It’s sad,” he continued, “that this contest doesn’t get the public support it deserves. Given how much Western Washington loves both art and craftsmanship, it’s kind of surprising that the contest isn’t more popular.”

I agree with Flint. I’ve been in touch with the contest promoters for several years. They tell me there’s never much money for advertising, but most newspapers in the area mention the event. The contest began in Harrison Hot Springs, B.C., and moved to the United States a few years ago. Assuming that the championship continues next year, we can watch for dates of the various preliminary contests and the finals on the homepage of the World Championship of Sand Sculpting.

A list of this year’s winners in the solo division, along with a slideshow by photographer Andy Hobbs, can be found on a special website produced by the Federal Way Mirror.

Likewise, Hobbs produced a similar page for the Federal Way Mirror in the doubles division.

This sculpture by Paul Hoggard and Remy Geerts is called Pride of Federal Way.
Photo courtesy of Flint Weiss

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