Grenada Underwater Sculpture Management, Inc. (GUSMI), in conjunction with Norwegian Artist Lene Kilde, is proud to announce a new addition to the world-renowned Underwater Sculpture Park in Grenada.
The underwater sculpture park at Molinere Bay has attracted worldwide attention as the first of its kind. The original sculptures were created by British sculptor Jason deCaires Taylor in 2007 as an environmental sustainability project to create new areas for corals, sponges and other marine life to grow and inhabit. Since then several other artists have contributed pieces of artwork to continue the development of the area. GUSMI Chairman Howard Clarke said: “The area has been a huge success with visitors and has become a major reason that people are travelling to Grenada. In 2012 it was named a ‘Wonder of the World’ by National Geographic and this type of recognition is just fantastic for Grenada.”
Lene Kilde, a recipient of a prestigious arts scholarship by the Norwegian Arts Council, was inspired by Grenada’s underwater art and applied to GUSMI to make a sculpture for the park. On arrival, Lene totally immersed herself in Grenadian life and culture exploring, experiencing and researching as much as possible to gain inspiration for a sculpture that would not only be helpful to the reef but would also have a strong connection with Grenada.
The new sculpture is based on the fabled ‘Nutmeg Princess’, a story by renowned Grenadian Author Richardo Keens-Douglas. The book was recently voted into the ‘Top 100 Books of All Time for Children in Canada’ by Todays Parents. The tale is spun around a beautiful Caribbean princess who lives at Grand Etang lake.
Artist Lene Kilde said: “I was thrilled to be in Grenada to help with this significant project and I am very proud that my sculpture ‘The Nutmeg Princess’ will continue to grow and evolve over the coming years. I am really looking forward to seeing her in the water.”
Howard Clarke said: “It was a great experience working with Lene. She is an exceptionally talented artist and the fact that the sculpture is based on a character from a book by a well-known Grenadian author makes it even more special. We would very much like to work with Lene again and I know she has many more ideas and concepts that we will be discussing with her and hopefully we be able to collaborate on another project in Grenada soon.”
With a total weight of 8 tonnes, constructed mainly from concrete and standing 11 ft tall “The Nutmeg Princess” is the biggest, heaviest and most ambitious sculpture that has been installed so far. Although Lene designed it to be in two separate pieces to make transportation and installation easier, the size and weight created logistical problems requiring much bigger cranes and trucks to lift and transport it than GUSMI has ever used before. Commercial divers used floats to tow the Princess the three miles to Molinere Bay where they then lowered and positioned the sculpture into her final location.
Within a day or two, the first algae will begin to grow and the fish will be attracted to it and will begin to feed there. Over the next few years, the statue will slowly be transformed by the marine life which will make their home on or near the sculpture.
The sculpture can be seen by snorkelling or diving at Molinere Bay which is located within the Molinere Marine Protected Area. As with any reef, visitors are reminded not to touch the reef or the sculptures as the sculptures and marine life growing on them are very fragile and can be easily damaged.
GUSMI would like to thank all their sponsors and those who assisted in the logistical building, moving and installation of the sculpture. GUSMI is keen to hear from local artists or sculptors who may wish to be involved in the park’s future development.
GUSMI received donations from Aquanauts, Banana Boat Tours/Shadowfax, Caribbean Aqua Terrestrial Solutions (CATS), Coyaba Beach Resort, Eco Dive & Trek, First Impressions, GEO F Huggins & Co (Grenada) Ltd, Grenada Seafaris Powerboat Adventure, Grenada Sea Fun Adventure, Navicom Marine, SNS Kayaks, St James Travel & Tours, Sunsation Tours, True Blue Bay Resort.