By Eloise Horsfield

AN unconventional art contest kicks off tomorrow in which competitors use a natural material to create fleeting – yet astounding – sculptures.

The International Sand Art Competition began on Marbella’s shores on Monday, with 10 artists from around the world working head to head.

With the theme of ‘Secrets of the Sea’, the seven-day challenge features artists from Europe and Russia, as well as award-winning Indian sand artist Sudarshan Pattnaik.

Pattnaik, who is fresh from winning first prize at the Copenhagen Sand Sculpture Contest in May with a 2.5 metre high mermaid, will certainly have his eye on the title.

“This will be my second appearance in Spain,” said the 35-year-old, who started working with sand at the age of seven and has since dedicated his life to the art form.

“When I participated here six years ago I won second prize,” he added, referring to the competition in Valladolid in 2003.

“There are so many species living in the oceans of which people know very little. I want to create a sculpture to raise awareness,” he said by way of a clue to his fans as to what he might create on Marbella beach.

Pattnaik’s previous sculptures include aids awareness pieces, Michael Jackson’s head along with his trademark fedora hat, and a sculpture of 105 Santa Clauses and Christmas trees on the beach in his hometown of Puri using a thousand tons of sand.



  1. I wonder if the resident beach bum will enter. There was a smelly guy who would make sand scultures of rocks, yes round boulders, and harass people for coins.

    I hope OP has pictures of the competition. i’d sure like to see them.

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