Thursday, January 7, 2010

Physical graffiti

One man’s mark on the land.

Zeebrugge beach, Belgium

Or should I say sand?

Cape Town, South Africa

Beautiful and temporary.


The artist is South African Calligrapher Andrew van der Merwe.   An avid surfer, he spent a lot of time doodling in the sand.  Over time, he began developing instruments that would allow him to make deep angular cuts in the sand while at the same time catching the sand so as to prevent it from stockpiling into his grooves.  It also appears that he developed shoes he could wear while working on his art that would leave no trace in the sand.

See more of van der Merwe’s work and learn more about his artform Here.  See more beach calligraphy at African beach calligraphy doodles.

Finally, a history of van der Merwe’s artform is Here and it is fascinating!


  1. I'm sure temporary art makes a statement in itself. At least there are a few pictures. No different from sand castle artists I guess. Thanks, these are beautiful.

  2. My first question was...what is he using? Thanks for the post. beatiful, provocative. I want to find something like it on our beach. Or make it.

  3. I'm so going to post about this on A Beach Lovers Place!

  4. What a lovely skill - I'd love to see his work in person. Have a great weekend!

  5. Pam,
    Thanks for stopping by and your lovely comment regarding my project. I have been to Wilmington a few times...beautiful area. I love the outdoors, particulary lush grass,flowers and plantings. I am always facinanted and impressed with landscape designers, so I will stop by often. These pictures are beautiful...don't know how his back survives it though!

  6. Rebecca, Thanks for stopping by! You are always welcome here. I was thinking the same thing about his back. He/it won't last long in that position!

    Others - check out the links I posted. His work and his story is fascinating!

  7. Hey, Pam, thanks for the post. Back problems? Never. I am always moving and support myself with my other hand on my knee. It's actually good exercise - much better than my usual desk work.


    1. Andrew- Thanks so much for stopping by. You are a gifted artist whose work inspires us all! Best of luck to you - I wish you continued success. I'm sure there must be many beach communities around the world who would pay you to grace their beaches with your art!


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