Nature nourishes, engages, and stimulates the soul. The Islands, Sea and Food Cluster concept is based on this concept of, “feeding the spirit” via sounds, colors, and aromas. The sound of rushing water, the crunch of footsteps on gravel, and hammering on wood convey a sense of the harmony typically found within the countries belonging to this Cluster.
Three oceans, stories of islands: Alessandra Sanguinetti
"Mayotte, Dominica and Vanuatu, each in the midst of far apart oceans, have distinctive languages, religion and histories, but they all share a caring and deep relationship to the land. Mangos, coconuts, bananas, pineapples, cocoa trees, avocados, taro, breadfruit… All these grow outside almost everyone’s home, so no matter peoples financial resources, the land offers rich sustenance and a sense of self sufficiency that is all, but lost to most of us in the larger continents. The coral paste that Mayotte women protect their faces with, the palm leaves and bamboo used to build homes, the elaborate laplap in Vanuatu, the pristine streams one can drink and fish from in Dominica, all depend on a very delicate balance between culture and nature, that these islands manage to maintain. I’ll never forget a day in Vanuatu, when together with a group of villagers we sailed to a deserted island made up of miles of mangroves. The women climbed through tangles of slippery branches to reach a clearing with muddy water where they would wade through for hours, feeling for shellfish with their feet. When done, they’d gently weave palm leaves into strong beautiful baskets to carry the shellfish in. From the beach, while they chatted, drank from coconuts and roasted a freshly caught fish, they all waved at a small boat which had palm leaves for sails and was smoothly being swayed by the wind".
Alessandra Sanguinetti is a recipient of a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, a Hasselblad Foundation Grant, Robert Gardner Fellowship, and a Rencontres D’Arles Discovery Award. Her photographs are in major public and private collections, such as the New York Museum of Modern Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Houston Museum of Fine Arts. Her monographs "On the Sixth Day" and "The Adventures of Guille and Belinda" and "The Enigmatic meaning of their Dreams" were published by Nazraeli Press in 2005 and 2012. Her latest monograph "Sorry Welcome" was published by TBW books in 2013. She is a member of Magnum Photos and is represented by Yossi Milo Gallery in New York and Ruth Benzacar Gallery in Buenos Aires. She currently resides in San Francisco and Buenos Aires.
EXHIBITION CONTENT: Università di Lingue e Comunicazione, IULM, Milan, Italy
SCIENTIFIC ADVISOR AND PROJECT COORDINATOR: Vincenzo Russo
CONCEPT AND EXHIBITION LAYOUT: Marco Imperadori, and Valentina Gallotti, Giuliana Iannaccone
TOTAL AREA: 2,535 sqm
EXHIBITION AREA: 750 sqm
COMMON AREA: 1,720 sqm
EVENTS AREA: 315 sqm
The Cluster Structure
The nations exhibiting within this cluster are housed in two pavilions linked by a large bamboo canopy. This creates a unique environment of colors and atmosphere. The walls of the pavilions feature quotations from well-known writers, including Homer, Joseph Conrad, Christopher Columbus, Charles Darwin, and Herman Melville, these words evocative of long sea-journeys to remote desert islands.
A visit to this Cluster ends at the refreshments and events area, a vast glass cube onto the walls of which are projected underwater images, conveying the feeling of actually being in the depths, enjoying these mysterious island seas, in close contact with their fascinating, yet fragile, biodiversity.
Protecting the ecosystems
The islands of the Pacific, of the Western Indian Ocean and of the Caribbean region are small, highly-diverse, as well as being a long way from each other, all with their own culture, economy, and differing levels of development.
While cut off from the main land-masses, these islands share the same global challenges that every other country has to face. Increased coastal flooding, due to rising sea levels, leads to salinization of agriculturally productive soil and a dramatic decline in fertility. Erosion, as well as changes in rainfall patterns merely add to the toll. These issues also impact the islands’ crafts and fishing activities, putting food security at even greater risk.
COUNTRIES BELONGING TO THIS CLUSTER
(Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname)
UN's presence in the Islands, Sea and Food Cluster
The UN Space located in the Islands, Sea and Food Cluster gives voice to the 600 million people who inhabit them. The islands are fundamental to the livelihoods, wellbeing and cultural identity of these islanders – one-tenth of the world’s population.
In order to safeguard these territories - their unique biodiversity, with plant and animal species not found elsewhere, their fragile economies, and particularly the small island states in the developing world – which are threatened by rising water levels, the United Nations and their partners carry out development projects, some of which will be presented at the UN Space in this cluster.
is present with 18 multimedia installations, easily recognizable by their giant blue spoons. These UN Spaces are located in various areas of the site along the itinerary dedicated to the theme “The Zero Hunger Challenge • United for a sustainable world”.