APPRECIATE ART AT SEA
Over lunch last week at Rudi’s Sel de Mer pop-up restaurant on board Holland America’s MS Noordam, Sam Roberts from ArtLink – a British company that sources works around the world by up-and-coming artists – is telling us about an art revolution at sea. Sam is the ArtLink Art Concierge who runs the gallery onboard where works by emerging artists from ports visited are up for sale.
“With our art program on board now, guests get to not only support the local culture by buying art from these places, it’s also something that reflects that visit,” Sam says.
These days cruise lines are using expert curators to source art that guests can truly appreciate and interact with both in onboard galleries and in public spaces. Here are some cruise lines leading the way.
CELEBRATING EMERGING LOCALS
This year Holland America Line joined forces with ArtLink to focus on emerging artists from destinations visited. As well as sourcing local works, an on-board expert from ArtLink hosts interactive events to delve deeper into the cultures they visit by being introduced to a region’s unique art and craftwork. Canadian-born Sam, who has a Master’s degree, is one such on-board expert.
“I’ve been tasked with going around various galleries in the ports of Australia and New Zealand. Right now the art in the gallery reflects all the ports that Holland America visits,” she says. “Within the next year or two, when a ship is in Australia or New Zealand, you’ll see pretty much exclusively artworks from this region.”
The thinking behind the concept is immersion. “The right piece of art can be not only an incredible souvenir for our guests but also a prominent way for them to connect emotionally with their travels,” Holland America president Orlando Ashford says. HOLLANDAMERICA.COM
AUSSIE ARTWORKS ABOUND
Wander the hallways and public spaces of Royal Caribbean’s Ovation of the Seas when she journeys in our waters this season and you’ll see a treasure trove of celebrated Australian artwork.
Twenty per cent of the works in the 11,000-piece collection are Aussie.
Highlights include Laura by Joseph Marr – a translucent life-size red figure of a woman standing tall in the Solarium – and Wallpaper Cockatoos by Emma Hack, featuring the painted figure of a woman camouflaged by the Florence Broadhurstdesigned wallpaper design of cockatoos and native Australian flora. The collection, which includes the sculpture of a mother panda and her cub, Mama and Baby, was curated by London art consultancy Peter Millard and Partners. ROYALCARIBBEAN.COM.AU
AN IMMERSIVE ART APP
Viking has a free app you can download before boarding where you can discover the stories behind each artwork onboard and take a self-guided tour once boarded. VIKINGCRUISES.COM.AU
Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ guests have suggested creating an alternative casual dinner experience that is more relaxed after a day of immersive shore excursions, so the cruise line has announced the opening of its pool grills to serve relaxed, gourmet dinner al fresco fleetwide. rssc.com
Forget seeing Africa’s wildlife in an open-topped vehicle, now you can see the incredible wildlife while afloat. You can do it on the a triple-decker houseboat owned by French-based tour company CroisiEurope. The houseboat traverses Lake Kariba on the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe. croisieuroperivercruises.com