Making a splash for World Oceans Day
The crowds at this year’s East Reading Festival will have the opportunity to take part in something a little bit different as Ocean Focus are organising a special painting event, ‘Oceans on Canvas’. The event is planned in association with World Oceans Day, Friday 8th June, and is a celebration of the beauty and magnificence of the world’s oceans and the marine life therein.
‘Oceans on Canvas’ will take place at Palmer Park in Reading on Sunday, 10th June, and is an educational community project aimed specifically at children, young people and families. Participants will be invited to help paint colourful, ocean-themed murals on two large canvases (2×2 metres each). The murals will feature aquatic habitats, such as coral reefs, and their inhabitants, such as whales, dolphins, sharks and sea turtles. Through the fun of painting, it’s hoped the project will remind the general public how significant healthy oceans and waterways are. In addition, the project will equip children and young people with the opportunity to develop their creativity in a positive and socially-responsible way. At the end of the day, once the murals have been completed, they will be donated to a local school, where they can continue to inform and educate young people about just how vital our oceans are.
When asked about ‘Oceans on Canvas’, Trica explained: ‘We wanted to design an event specifically to promote the oceans through art and we felt that the East Reading Festival was the perfect opportunity. Being locally-based, we are always thinking about how to engage with as many people as possible in our home town. As with all inland cities, it can be hard for the community in a town like Reading to fully understand the significance of our oceans and the impact they have on our daily lives. So we thought we would see if we could re-establish the connection by bringing the oceans to Reading! Basically, we’re using ‘Oceans on Canvas’ to communicate an important environmental message whilst at the same time making sure people enjoy themselves. The event promises to be a lot of fun and we’re really looking forward to seeing everyone there!’
The aim is to use this event as a platform to run more events like this and reach an even wider Reading audience, such as working directly with schools and youth groups. The model is based on the inspirational marine life artist in America, Wyland, who has been educating young people through art for two decades. The Oceans on Canvas project has been funded by The Earley Charity, who are keen to promote all aspects of art, culture and heritage in Reading.