Ocean-inspired ‘This is My Mexico’ art exhibition on display at aquariums, pier

Published 6:44 pm Thursday, April 25, 2024

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Unique and beautiful, the North Carolina Aquariums at Fort Fisher and on Roanoke Island and Jennette’s Pier are showcasing children’s artwork curated from “Este es mi México 2023” or “This is My Mexico 2023” through April 28. NCA Fort Fisher (NCAFF) is showcasing 20 pieces of the ocean-inspired art, NCA Roanoke Island (NCARI) will exhibit 16 and the pier, eight. The exhibition is a compilation of work selected from the 2022 and 2023 “This is My Mexico” Children’s Drawing Contest hosted by the Secretaría de Relaciones Exteriores de México (Mexican Secretariat of Foreign Affairs), the Institute for Mexicans Abroad and the Consulate General of Mexico in Raleigh.

“It is an honor to showcase this beautiful and creative art for our visitors at two North Carolina Aquariums and Jennette’s Pier,” said Reid Wilson, secretary of the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (DNCR). “North Carolina’s Aquariums are valuable educational hubs for ocean conservation, which makes this collaboration an ideal opportunity to see the passion for our marine life through the art of children around the world. We are grateful to the Mexican Secretariat of Foreign Affairs and the Mexican Consulate in Raleigh for their work on this project and for sharing it with us and our communities.”

NCAFF hosted Claudia Velasco Osorio, Consul General of Mexico in Raleigh to open “Este es mi México” on April 16 at the aquarium at 900 Loggerhead Road in Kure Beach. Jeff Michael, deputy director for natural resources, DNCR and Hap Fatzinger, director of the North Carolina Aquariums joined her.

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According to the Mexican Secretariat of Foreign Affairs:

“México es privilegiado por su posición geográfica al estar rodeado por el Océano Pacífico, el Océano Atlántico, el Golfo de California, el Golfo de México y el mar Caribe además, de islas e islotes que dan como resultado una extensa variedad en ecosistemas y especies que caracterizan a nuestro país.”

[Translation: “Mexico is privileged because of its geographic position surrounded by the Pacific Ocean, the Atlantic Ocean, the Gulf of California, the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea, including islands and islets that provide an extensive variety of ecosystems and species that characterize our country.”]

“My Mexico” is an opportunity for children from all over the world to create art for the contest with the theme of species, oceans and seas in response to goal 14 of the 2015 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Goal 14 calls upon nations to conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development, noted a news release from NCARI.  

“We are honored and privileged to have this very creative artwork at the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher. The art is stunning and tells a beautiful story about how the next generation values our oceans and marine life in alignment with our mission to inspire appreciation and conservation of our aquatic environments,” said Joanna Zazzali, acting director, NCAFF.

The aquariums and pier staff are excited to include “This is My Mexico” as part of the visitor experience. NCARI is displaying the artwork next to the Sea Senses exhibit and the Livesavers Galler, Jennette’s Pier is using its first floor Waterfall Lobby and NCAFF is showcasing the artwork in the Marine Building near the Cape Fear Shoals habitat.

For more information about the aquariums and pier or to purchase tickets, go to ncaquariums.com.