OBLU by Atmosphere at Helengeli installs sculptures representing ‘Nakaiy’

Sculptures at Oblu Helengeli

Maldives.net.mv – In line with the commitment from the OBLU Management to encourage local artisans and promote Maldivian architecture, OBLU by Atmosphere at Helengeli has just installed sculptures created by Maldivian artist, Umair Badheeu.

As per Mr. Rein van Zandvoort, General Manager – OBLU at Helengeli, the idea is to connect the foreign guests with the culture & traditions of Maldives. Mr.Rein said “Being creative is a way of life, at OBLU. We wish to showcase to our guests, the Maldivian way of life through arts & creativity”. He also added that “This platform offers the Maldivian artists a golden opportunity to express & showcase their creativity & designs to the foreign tourists. Unfortunately, there are not many forums available in the Maldives to showcase such creativity and we are proud to be part of this process.”

The sculpture installations at OBLU are based on the Maldivian weather calendar system, Nakaiy. The year is divided into 27 Nakaiys, wherein each Nakaiy is a 13-14 day period. Every Nakaiy has subtle changes in the weather. This system is derived from the Indian Nakshatra system.

For this series of installations, each sculpture derives qualities and designs based on the characteristics and meanings corresponding to the individual Nakaiy. For instance, the form of the first installation (Between 26.40°(in Mesha/Aries) and 10° (Vrishabha/Taurus)), is derived from the shape of the presiding deity according to Hindu astrology. The title refers to the space this Nakaiy takes in the sky.

3 Divers and coral

Most of the pre-fabrication and design elements for these pieces, were created whilst living on an uninhabited island and all the materials used are locally acquired. For the first piece, Vaa Dhiggaa (wood of a Sea Hibiscus), coconut husk and a synthetic rope was used. The wood was treated in the sea for 10 days, which is a traditional method that is usually employed for protection against insects. The husks were initially burnt as a mosquito repellent, but when half-way burnt, the husks stay without decaying for a longer time. Eventually these husks were used as a material for the first piece to represent the Fire and Agricultural activity during Kethi Nakaiy.

Once prepared, all the materials were transported to Helengeli Island, where the installation began for the first time based on a previously scaled model. Each installation is done on site and environmental conditions on site with changes in design, for the formalization of the work.

Helengeli Island, located in North Male Atoll, renowned for its exotic house reef, was re-launched in November 2015 as OBLU by Atmosphere at Helengeli. As part of the core philosophy of Atmosphere Hotels & Resorts, every resort within their portfolio, will always strive to create locally enriching experience whereby the discerning customer will always be able to enjoy & appreciate the Indian Ocean culture & artisanship.

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