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There is undoubtedly an ocean of talented men and women around Papua New Guinea in every field of study and the field of visual arts is no exception. Port Moresby Nature Park had the privilege of having one exceptionally talented artist lead its resourceful team of volunteers to create some of the new impressive sculptures for the BSP Trash to Treasure Sculpture Festival this year.
Saimon Vacilli is a 40 year old artist originally from the Milne Bay Province who displays great humility and life through his paintings and attitude to work. Saimon’s experiences from being a secondary teacher to a tour guide in the late 90s to early 2000 allowed him to learn so much about culture, history and tradition which led him to depict these experiences through paintings.
His love for art gradually developed from being a past-time to a small home venture that he now runs from the comfort of his home in Rainbow Estate, Gerehu. When Saimon heard about the Nature Park needing volunteers for the BSP Trash to Treasure Sculpture Festival in May this year, he immediately approached a friend for the possibility of signing him up as a volunteer. Sure enough, the Park welcomed Saimon’s genuine interest with very little knowledge of how much more he would contribute to this big event through his expertise.
Saimon led his team aided by the support of his good friend Mark Donia who is also a teacher from Milne Bay. Together, with the rest of the creative team led by the Marketing team, interns from UPNG, volunteers from ATS, Grounds and Maintenance staff of Port Moresby Nature Park, they were all able to have ready in time the Trash to Treasure Sculptures that are currently out on display around the Park.
Through Saimon’s various community engagement projects, he hopes that he can advocate to more locals on the importance of being resourceful. The Trash to Treasure Sculpture Festival was a great platform for Saimon to be a part of therefore expressed interest to continue in supporting the event throughout its duration at Port Moresby Nature Park.
It is the freedom of being one with nature here at the Park and to work towards his interest that motivates Saimon to further support the Park voluntarily. Visitors to the BSP Trash to Treasure Festival each weekend at the Park, can catch Saimon in action either doing face-painting for kids or live-painting on site for the crowds’ amusement. It is fascinating to see his imagination in action as Saimon creatively recreates a photograph of a working class woman into a portrait that now has the woman entirely in traditional ‘bilas’.
On your next outing this weekend, head to the Port Moresby Nature Park where you can have a truly valued experience at the BSP Trash to Treasure Sculpture Festival. There will be bouncing castles for kids to enjoy, while parents can relax on the green lawns or out on the Cafe deck. All proceeds from the face-painting go towards Nature Park’s Wildlife Appeal.
The BSP Trash to Treasure Sculpture Festival event would not be made possible without the support of naming rights sponsor, BSP Financial Group, our event Sponsors IHG Group, Trukai Industries and CPL Group, including event supporters Goodman Fielder International, The National, NCDC, Digicel,
and Active City Youth Development Program. The BSP Trash to Treasure Sculpture Festival is ongoing at the Port Moresby Nature Park until Sunday 11th July 2021.
Port Moresby Nature Park is a charity organization that relies on grants and donor funding to operate. By visiting the park and joining our Membership, you help support the Park’s efforts in preserving PNG’s unique natural environment for future generations, including the Park’s 550 resident animals, majority of which have been surrendered to the Park for care.
Mrs. Karen-Marie Lillie
Port Moresby Nature Park