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Air Seychelles together with Arterial Network Seychelles, will be hosting a two-week exhibition of 16 colourful giant tortoise sculptures at Seychelles International Airport with the support of the Seychelles Civil Aviation Authority (SCAA), from this Monday, 5 February.

The life-size sculptures were originally designed for the Venice Biennale art show in Italy, where they were on display at the Seychelles pavilion between May and November last year, and returned to the archipelago on Saturday, 27 January onboard Air Seychelles flight HM 17 from Paris.

Travellers and members of the public will be able to view the works of art, prominently displayed at key airport locations including the information desk, Skychef restaurant, Domestic Terminal, and the airline’s Salon Vallée De Mai in the departure lounge.

The sculptures which started off as blank fiberglass tortoises, designed by George Camille and Allen Camille has been painted by Seychellois artists, to reflect various aspects of island life and culture in the Seychelles. They were carefully transported to and from Europe by Air Seychelles and Etihad Airways.

George Camille, the leader of the project, said: “As one of the most iconic symbols of the Seychelles and an animal recognised all around the world, we are thrilled that our giant tortoise sculptures can now be displayed and appreciated in Seychelles. This was a fantastic project to be involved in for the artist community in Seychelles and we thank Air Seychelles for supporting the shipment of these pieces and for initiating the exhibition together with SCAA.”

Martin Kennedy, the curator of the exhibition said: “It is wonderful to have our tortoises back on home soil and entirely appropriate, bearing in mind the fantastic support we have received from Air Seychelles, that they will be initially exhibited at the airport before moving on to pastures new.”

Remco Althuis, Interim Chief Executive Officer of Air Seychelles, said: “We are happy to support the exhibition of these tortoise sculptures in Seychelles and are confident they will catch the attention of many travellers, who will no doubt be looking forward to seeing these majestic creatures up close on their holidays. As the national airline we are proud to be able to support the development of art in Seychelles and showcase it to the world.”

The 16 tortoises will be on display until Friday, 16 February.

The artists are:  Alyssa Adams, Tristan Adams, George Camille, Christine Chetty – Payet, Zoe Chong- Seng, Daniel Dodin, Charles Dodo, Allen Ernesta, Christine Harter Nigel Henri, Alcide Libanotis, Marc Luc, Egbert Marday, Colbert Nourrice and Leon Radegonde.

About Air Seychelles

Air Seychelles, the national airline of the Republic of Seychelles, was established in 1978 and began long-haul service in 1983. As the main driver of tourism in Seychelles, it is a core pillar of the national economy.

The airline offers international flights to Johannesburg, Mauritius, Mumbai and Tel Aviv as well as charter services on demand. On the domestic network, Air Seychelles operates daily domestic flights between Mahe and Praslin as well as charter services throughout the archipelago.

In 2020, Air Seychelles won the most coveted title of ‘Indian Ocean’s Leading Airline’ at the World Travel Awards. The full service carrier was also recognized as ‘Indian Ocean's Leading Airline - Business Class’ and ‘Indian Ocean's Leading Cabin Crew ’at World Travel Awards Indian Ocean Winners Day.