To remember Andrew Simpson
TV star Andrew Marr is encouraging school-children to help raise cash in memory of the late sailing star Andrew Simpson MBE.
The Fine Art Sails National ‘Sail Art’ Competition is aimed to encourage and mentor children into sailing, honouring Simpson’s life and legacy.
The “Sail Art” contest is supported by The Campaign for Drawing led by the Serpentine Gallery Founding Director Sue Grayson-Ford. The campaign’s patrons include Andrew Marr, Sir Quentin Blake, and David Hockney CM.
“It’s a way youngsters can express themselves while also keeping Andrew’s memory alive,” said America’s Cup winner and Olympic Gold medalist Sir Ben Ainslie, who is also backing the campaign.
“The sail is a great canvas for kids to paint all over and express themselves in different ways. I’m very excited about that,” he said.
Simpson was best known for his gold medal won at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing with his lifelong friend Iain Percy in the two-man Star class. They took the silver medal at the London 2012 Olympics.
Simpson also participated in the inaugural Fine Art Sails UK Championship Regatta, held 18-20 January 2013 during the Tullett Prebon London Boat Show.
After the Star class was dropped for the 2016 Olympics in Rio, 36-year-old Simpson moved to San Francisco in March 2013 to begin training for the America’s Cup. He died tragically on 9th May when the 72-foot catamaran he was aboard capsized, trapping him underneath for 10 minutes.
Following Simpson’s death, the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation (ASSF) was established by Iain Percy OBE, Sir Ben Ainslie, and Andrew’s wife, Leah.
The “Sail Art” contest will give every child in the 28,000 U.K. schools the chance to create fine art for Olympic Star Class sails.
Students aged seven to 17 are challenged to design a 10-meter-tall main sail for a “Star Class” yacht to be raced by Sir Ben Ainslie, Iain Percy OBE and other Olympic Games sailors during the London Boat Show on 4-5 January, 2014.
The competition for the best artwork for the Olympic sails is in three categories – 7-10 years; 11-14 years; 15-17 years.
Schools must choose and submit only one entry per age category. Closing date for entries is 2 p.m. Friday 29 November 2013.
The theme is ‘Legends of the Sea’ intended to unleash imaginations and art materials. Students are to think about sea gods, mythical marine creatures, Atlantis or any windy and watery shanties that take their fancy.
The three winning student artworks, one from each age group, will be hoisted onto Olympic Star Class sails for the regatta. Three newly established artists’ work will join that of four artists from last year’s regatta: Goldie, Julian Opie, David Begbie and EINE.
The first prizes also will include a day sailing with Olympic sailors, STAEDTLER art materials worth £250 for the winning schools, and a special invitation to the London Boat Show in January 2014 to watch the Fine Art Sails regatta on 4-5 January 2014.
“My idea with this competition is to let every child in the country know about sailing, not just as a sport but as a potential career path,” said Fine Arts Sails founder Michael Ross.
“What better way to honour Andrew and his life’s passion?”