After a challenging and competitive selection process, the Cayman Islands Mangrove Rangers have chosen the winners of the first Cayman Mangrove Festival Student Art Show, hosted 22 July at George Town’s Parcel 110.
More than 30 students from Grand Cayman and Cayman Brac, alongside 10 invited artists, contributed their mangrove-inspired art to the inaugural event, aimed at raising awareness and education about the islands’ wetlands.
Students were tasked with creating art of any style of their choosing on the environmental, cultural or economic value of Cayman’s mangroves. The prompt inspired a diverse range of submissions, including painting, sculpture, knitting and fashion.
The charity event raised hundreds of dollars in support of the Cayman Islands Mangrove Rangers through donations, art sales and workshop partnerships with STOAK’D and Art Nest Creative Studio.
“We are so happy that the first Cayman Mangrove Festival was a success,” said Dinara Perera, lead Mangrove Ranger and event organiser. “The artworks from our student and invited artists were all amazing and we hope that this experience will help to pave the way for a cultural shift in Cayman about the importance of our mangroves.”
The winning pieces from the student art show will be used to design a 2022 Cayman Islands Mangrove Rangers calendar, which will raise funds to support the nonprofit organisation’s goal of promoting mangrove education and conservation.
Winners were selected in four categories: Ages 10 and under, Ages 11 to 14, Ages 15-18 and the Mangrove Fashion Show. Invited artist Teresa Grimes provided insight for the art competition judging and Miss Cayman Islands Universe Mariah Tibbetts judged the fashion show.
Each winning student artist will receive a prize, thanks to support from Central Terrace (Lucky Slice Pizza), Cayman Arts Festival, Michelle Bryan and CLM Publishing.
Ages 10 and under
• Best in Age Group/Artist’s Choice - Shrubbhavi Choudhary, 7, and Arshiya Anuj, 6
• Second Place - Ylon Chambers, 7
• Young Artists Award - Aatikah Manahil, 2; Aabirah Maham, 7 and Muhammad Ibrahim, 6
• Teamwork Award - Matilda, Bodhi, Ashbury and Ava of Island Montessori
• Honorable Mention for Group Project - Riomy Childers, 8; Ellerie Keenan, 7 and Kinsley Hargrave, 9 from Island Montessori
Ages 11 to 14
• Best in Age Group/Ranger’s Choice - Ziva Costa, 12
• Most Innovative Project - Zara Majid, 11
• Up-and-Coming Artist - Samita Ghosh, 11
• Best in show - Melissa Bachet, 17
• Second Place - Iana Jackson, 15
• Young Photographer Award - Kayla Parsons, 18
Mangrove Fashion Show
• 1st - Shrubbhavi Choudhary (Mother Nature)
• 2nd - Arshiya Anuj (wood fairy)
• 3rd - Athena Edwards (jellyfish)
To register interest in the Student mangrove art calendar, submit your details here: Calendar sign up - https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdlgp5-8u6Dg-kSFkdKnHJ5vi5veM0q1Whykx4jJpaPWIqPQ/viewform
Mangrove Rangers recruitment
The Cayman Islands Mangrove Rangers are currently recruiting for new Rangers. The Mangrove Rangers programme gives the opportunity to learn about and interact with mangrove habitats, as well help with critical mangrove-protection activities such as data collection, outreach and event planning.
“Our second year of operation we are looking for new Mangrove Rangers to help us protect Cayman’s mangrove forest,” said Mangrove Rangers Director Martin Keeley. “Several of our rangers have left the island to go back to college, and we’ve been approached by many young Caymanians who wish to take their place. It’s a fun and exciting program and a very vital way to save our mangroves.”
To register interest in becoming a Mangrove Ranger, email email@example.com