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    HZ Women Of The Month: Janavi Mahimtura Folmsbee Is An Artist Trying To Conserve Marine Life

    Janavi Mahimtura Folmsbee is an artist, marine conservationist, water optimist and scuba diver. Using her art and efforts, she has been trying to spread awareness about marine conservation. She suggests crossing all boundaries if needed to work on...
    • Krati Purwar
    • Editorial
    Updated at - 2023-02-01,11:24 IST
    janavi mahimutra folmsbee marine conservation artist

    According to a report published in National Geographic, global warming is the reason behind the sea levels rising, which can be a threat to coastal population centres. In fact, pesticides and chemical nutrients used in agriculture are making their way to the oceans and causing depletion in oxygen levels which results in the death of shellfish and marine plants.

    You must have heard or seen in many documentaries that aquatic life in rivers, seas and oceans is in danger. Oil spills, dumping of sewage water, and industrial wastage making their way to contaminate water bodies, are the leading causes of dead corals, loss of habitation and supply of clean drinking water. 

    What are we doing about it? Even if we cannot stop industries from dumping their waste into our seas and oceans, we can certainly make people aware of marine conservation. This is exactly what Janavi Mahimtura Folmsbee is doing with her art.

    On January 31, 2023, Folsmbee joined us for an HZ Women Of The Month session to talk about the importance of marine life, how humans are exploiting it and why we need to conserve it.

    She was the only Indian selected for an array of projects to turn the Houston Airports in the USA into a collection of art. She was part of the team that painted the walls and ceilings of a tunnel connecting two international terminals.

    Journey To Conserve Marine Life

    Born and raised in Mumbai, India, Folmsbee has always been a water baby. She decided at an early age to become an artist. It did not settle well with her family because they were sceptical about the scope of earning in the field. 

    Though she was sure that she wanted to be an artist, she lacked inspiration. It all changed when Folmsbee did her first scuba dive. The natural hues and many colours existing altogether under the ocean left her mesmerised.

    She was assertive about who she wanted to be and what she wanted to do. Then came a friend who directed her to devote her hobby to her passion. The artist designed art depicting life underwater, highlighting why we need to conserve it and what can be done. 

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    Human Exploitation Of Marine Life

    Seeing dirty beaches, dead coral and humans exploiting marine life, Folmsbee connected with many scientists to understand how humans are exploiting the oceans and seas, and what can be done to preserve aquatic life.

    The scuba diving enthusiast (Indian destination for adventure enthusiasts) has explored the depths of many water bodies and suggests that the biggest change can come via awareness. According to Folmsbee, a beach cleaning drive does nothing for the seas and oceans because we just clean the land in such cases.

    In order to clean the oceans, we need to understand where we are going wrong with fishing practices, how we can recycle waste before dumping it in water, and how can we spread awareness on the subject.

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    She suggests reading and communicating with communities of scientists can help a lot in changing the mindsets of people. “The water in seas and oceans is ours to save. For this one cause, we all can keep our racial, gender and class differences aside because if marine life is lost, oceans will be lost and they are the source of 90% of the oxygen on our planet.”

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    Janavi’s work has been inspired by Jacque Louis David, a French revolutionary painter. She loves the artworks of Nick Cave, Murakami Takashi, Damien Hirst, Olafur Eliasson, MF Hussain, S. H. Raza and Francis Souza. You can review her art on her Instagram page, her website and Houston Airport’s website. 


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