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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Art And Beauty Of Open Water Swimming

Not only will there be great conversations, educational seminars and inspirational presentations at the 2012 Global Open Water Swimming Conference in Long Beach, California on September 21-23, but there will also be artwork on the open water swimming world enhancing the conference rooms aboard the Queen Mary.

Dr. Lisa Stansbie is one of those artists and presenters who will enhance the Conference with her creations.

Dr. Dr. Stansbie is Head of The Department of Art and Communication at the University of Huddersfield in the U.K. Her Ph.D. was awarded in 2010 from Leeds Metropolitan University and was unique in that it exists solely as a website. As an artist, her contemporary art work crosses many disciplines including sculpture, photography, film, sound and drawing.

During her three-month sabbatical from The University of Huddersfield, she aimed at producing a new body of work. Her research and subsequent work centered on her love of open water swimming with a particular focus on channel training and channel swimmers.

Within contemporary art there are few practitioners cross the worlds of sport and art.

"I wanted to create work about channel swimming, but from an insider's perspective and without merely just illustrating the sport." In February and March 2012 a period of filming was undertaken for the project which involved filming hardy cold water swimmers and locations around the U.K including St. Neots (Cambridge), The Serpentine, London, Tooting Bec Lido (London) Cornwall, Scarborough and the North East coast of England.

Dr. Stansbie also created a series of sculptures based on photographs of homemade feeding equipment from English Channel swimmers. She used the same objects and materials, such as sports/feeding bottles, kick boards, ropes, poles and latex to create a series of feeding sculptures. "I have also cast feeding bottles in pigmented plaster and even melted plastic bottles into abstract shapes. The sculptures are then used within photographs and films, often using camera movement to stimulate a ‘rocking’ sensation."

Very creatively and of interest to those interested in the affects of ocean tidal movement on swimmers is a drawing that utilizes the GPS information from the English Channel escort boat Anastasia. The piece collates all the routes undertaken by the pilot Eddie Spelling during the year 2011.

Dr. Stansbie's recent work has looked at the rituals involved in both the actual swim and the training itself. Using herself as the protagonist, she is currently documenting with film, her reaction after cold water immersion as she attempts to acclimatise. It is intended that this will culminate in a film of each episode that illustrates how the ‘shakes’ gradually become less.

Enjoy her creative designs - along those of Jen King - at the 2012 Global Open Water Swimming Conference in Long Beach this coming September 21st - 23rd.

Copyright © 2012 by Open Water Source

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Open Water Swimming Magazine

Open Water Swimming Magazine

The Open Water Swimming Magazine is the monthly magazine entirely focused on open water swimming heroes and heroines of every age, ability, and background. Published by the World Open Water Swimming Association, the Open Water Swimming Magazine is a free benefit to WOWSA members.

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The Other Shore follows world record holder and legendary swimmer Diana Nyad as she comes out of a thirty-year retirement to re-attempt an elusive dream: swimming 103 miles non-stop from Cuba to Florida without the use of a shark cage. Her past and present collide in her obsession with a feat that nobody has ever accomplished. At the edge of The Devil’s Triangle, tropical storms, sharks, venomous jellyfish, and one of the strongest ocean currents in the world, all prove to be life-threatening realities. Timothy Wheeler’s documentary brings Diana Nyad’s extraordinary adventure to life as Diana sets out to prove that will and determination are all you need to make the unimaginable possible.

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An Almanac for Open Water Swimming

An almanac is essentially a body of knowledge which is so complete that it enables people in different fields to make predictions about the future of their respective industries.

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