Announcement: Winning Short Film at RAK Fine Arts Festival 2023

Winning Short Film Announcement, 8 February 2023

Congratulations to the team behind the short film ‘The Girl who Fell in Love with the Mangroves’ for winning the first prize in the RAK Fine Arts Festival 2023.  This film was part of the Mangroves from the Water 2021 exhibition in Geelong, Australia.  We hope the prize will encourage film producers to create more inspiring films for the mangroves.

We’d like to congratulate the writer and film director Pauline Dupin, and also Rakhi Sawalani who acted the main character ‘the Girl’. 

Rakhi Sawalani and Pauline Dupin

We also acknowledge Geraldine Chansard, the film executive and the creator of Woman from the Mangroves, the sculpture featured in the film.

Geraldine Chansard and Pauline Dupin
Geraldine Chansard and Pauline Dupin

On this occasion we’d also like to thank the Sharjah Institute for Heritage and the Chairman Dr Abd Aziz Al Musallam for their continuous support to the mangroves and our art campaign, Mangroves from the Water (MFTW).  We thank the Institute for publishing extra issues of a special edition of Marawed magazine that focuses on the mangroves as part of Emirati Heritage.

To follow up the news about the winning film, please open these links:

Zahidah Zeytoun Millie

MFTW Founder and Curator

Announcement! : Two workshops by one of MFTW’s artists, Jacqui Dreessens.

Announcement for two workshops by one of MFTW’s inspiring artists, Jacqui Dreessens.

Kayak, Mangroves, Poetry

Do you like kayaking? Ever written poetry? Have you ever seen the mangrove forest on Wadawurrung Country between Barwon Heads and Ocean Grove? Come and witness first hand this incredible ecosystem that clears the water and puts oxygen in the air for all of us Beings to breathe. So hardy and yet so fragile. A different World awaits from the Water.

This is Part A of an exciting afternoon/evening: 4pm-6pm. Where the River meets the Sea – Kayak, Mangroves, Poetry

To find out more please open the link

Full Moon Dance

Park B – is a dance making workshop under the Full Moon: 7-10pm – Where the Moonahs meet the Mangroves.

In the news: UAE’s participation at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival, Washington D.C.

Khaleej Times features the UAE’s participation in the 2022 Smithsonian Folklife Festival.

The article includes a YouTube video message by Yousef Al Otaiba, UAE Ambassador to the US, who said “since the first Folklife Festival in 1967, the event has honoured global cultural traditions and celebrates those who practice and sustain them”.

“The 2022 festival theme is UAE – Living Landscape l Living Memory. These two primary pillars will introduce festival attendees to arts, poetry, cuisine and other cultural traditions that have made the UAE an inclusive, modern and pioneer nation in just 50 years,” added Al Otaiba (Khaleej Times).

Please read the full article by Waheed Abbas for Khaleej Times here:

The iconic obelisk The Washington Monument where the festival will take place.

Launched in 1967, the Festival is an international exhibition of living cultural heritage presented annually in the summer in Washington, DC. This year’s edition, Living Landscape | Living Memory, will be held from June 22 to 27 and June 30 to July 4 at the National Mall, Washington DC, and will feature the UAE.

Mangroves from the Water will be there!!

Photos: student kayak workshop with Zahidah

Zahidah ran a successful workshop with school students on Thursday 18 November 2021. 

Zahidah instructing students from the kayak

The nine Year 11 students from Thomas Carr College, along with three teachers, joined Zahidah on kayaks through the mangrove forests in Victoria.

The workshop is about a two hour trip: 20 minutes to kayak around the mangroves, then stop in a sheltered spot within the mangroves, then to sketch the scene using watercolour technique.  The aim of the workshop is to create a bond between the kayaker (student) and the mangrove trees by sketching them and to build greater understanding of the mangrove forests in Victoria, Australia.

For more details about workshops, please open this link:

The UAE’s commitment to Climate Change

The National newspaper ( 1 November, Thursday) headline’s the UAE’s commitment to Climate Change:

As a strong advocate of environmental protection, the UAE has marked the fifth anniversary of the Paris Agreement with renewed resolve and enhanced ambition to address climate change. The country took a new step on the path to a climate-safe future with the submission of its second nationally determined contribution (NDC) last month to the Secretariat of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. Its new commitments involve climate change mitigation and adaptation.

Image courtesy of : Mangrove Walk at Al Jubail Island. The UAE is doing everything from limit greenhouse gas emissions to planting more mangroves to tackle climate change. Antonie Robertson / The National

Please see the full article here

Video: Mangroves – Vanguards of the sea

This video is an introduction to the Mangroves from the Water project, narrated by Zahidah Zeytoun Millie. 

We would like to thank the producer Sarah Treacy and Phil Hines for the filming and editing. 

Our sincere gratitude to Jacqui Bennett, the founder of Humans in Geelong for the continued support. 

Humans in Geelong Expo will debut online on 10 October 2021 to align with the mental health month in Australia. The in-person event for Humans in Geelong Expo will open on 5 December 2021. 

The beautiful paintings of Helen Martin

The beautiful paintings of Helen Martin conveys a touching fondness for her husband by translating his deep-rooted connection to the mangroves, Her skill as a painter is evident in the atmospheric depictions of mangrove trees as seen in the images below, manifesting the vibrancy and liveliness through brush strokes and play of light.

Helen’s artist statement:

For the Mangroves from the Water Exhibition, Helen is collaborating with her husband Peter Martin, who has a deep affinity with mangroves having grown up playing and exploring them on the shore in front of his family home at Peek’s Point, East Gosford in New South Wales – on Darkinjung Country. 

Her works for the exhibition draw on recent images of a small stand of white mangroves planted in the early 1960s by the five Martin boys at shoreline of Broken Bay. These young boys were motivated to plant mangrove seedlings they had found nearby in response to the degradation and destruction of the local mangroves, their playground, caused by unabashed urban development. The mangroves were seeded in the rocky foreshore among the clusters of native oysters, and over the past 50 years thrived, creating a new habitat.

Helen Martin’s paintings: ‘Mangroves at Peek’s Point, Darkinjung Country: a Martin Legacy I-V’, 2021.

“The girl who fell in love with the mangroves” : sneak preview!

We are so proud of the variety of multi-media on offer at the next Mangroves from the Water exhibition.

Here is a preview to entice you to visit the Gordon Gallery.

Geraldine Chansard collaborated with director Pauline Dupin to create this heartwarming tale in a short video.

You can follow the news thread on Geraldine’s crowdfunding page to see the development of this project, as well as contribute to realize her dream: