Since its opening on Thursday, September 5, 2019 at the General Archives of the Indies of Seville, on the eve of the official arrival of the sailing ship Fleur de Passion after The Ocean Mapping Expedition, and on October 29, the exhibition Nuestra Isla de las especias attracted more than 50’000 visitors, which suggests a massive if not record attendance until its end, on 31st of March 2020. Designed and organized by the Fondation Pacifique, the exhibition staged in two galleries on the ground floor from the prestigious Sevillian institution features a wide selection of drawings, sketches, watercolors and other engravings made by the 20 mainly Swiss cartoonists – 10 women and 10 men – who followed one another “in residence” aboard Fleur de Passion throughout of expedition around the world. In its unique manner, it capture the spirit and diversity of the world tour in the wake of Magellan just completed by the Swiss sailboat. Beyond, it highlights the vitality and importance of Geneva and Switzerland in terms of comics and illustration in general. The exhibition, free of charge, has the support of Pro Helvetia and the Canton of Geneva, and was inaugurated in the presence of the Swiss Ambassador to Spain. Note that it is these same designers who illustrate the book « Dans le miroir de Magellan, le rétrécissement du monde », published in late October 2019 by Slatkine editions and retracing the 4 years and a half of adventure around the world.
Quite a symbol! It was on Monday, 8 June 2020, known as World Oceans Day, that the Swiss sailing ship Mauritius cast off, leaving Brittany towards the Arctic Ocean on a new expedition of the Pacific Foundation. During five years and in the same spirit as sailing around the world in Magellan’s wake, the Arctic Expedition will aim to measure the human impact on one of the most sensitive areas in the world in the urgent context of climate change and to raise awareness on related sustainable issues. The expedition will undertake a continuous monitoring of greenhouse gas concentrations (methane and carbon dioxide) in partnership with the University of Geneva and a mapping of microplastic pollution with Oceaneye. In partnership with the Polytechnic University of Catalonia, the 30-metre schooner will also be the first sailing boat in the world to be equipped with the innovative new EAR to the WILD application, allowing users to listen to marine life with a smartphone as part of a programme on ocean noise pollution. Among the crew members, two teenagers in rehabilitation also embarked as ship’s boys as part of the experience-sharing component of the expedition. For the time being, in this first year of a new long-distance adventure, the crew will head towards Scandinavia, namely Norway, Svalbard, Greenland and Iceland.