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Seychellois couple builds model schooners to promote history of travel across island nation

Victoria, Seychelles | May 2, 2018, Wednesday @ 14:45 in Business | By: Daniel Laurence Edited by: Betymie Bonnelame | Views: 3157
Seychellois couple builds model schooners to promote history of travel across island nation

Each model sold will be accompanied by the story of the schooner printed on a scroll and a numbered certificate. (Daniel Laurence, Seychelles News Agency)

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(Seychelles News Agency) - A Seychellois couple is constructing models of schooners in a bid to promote handmade craft and revive the history of travelling by boat in the waters of Seychelles.

Created by Ricky Morin and Julia Morin, ‘L'Art Divine’ -- the name of the business -- is located at Plaisance, a central Mahe district. The models cost from $362 to $727 (SCR 5,000 to SCR 10,000).

One of the founders, Ricky Morin, said that as the means of travelling between the islands of Seychelles has changed, the models of the traditional schooners will help preserve the memories of those times.

Each model sold will be accompanied by the story of the schooner printed on a scroll and a numbered certificate, making it a prime collector's item and an ideal gift for the nostalgic Seychellois or visitors.

“In yesteryears, schooners were the main means of transportation between the Seychelles’ islands,” said Morin. 

He added that many Seychellois will fondly recall travelling in the schooners to and from the islands in their youth.

“Today, very few of these ships are utilised to navigate our waters. Modern vessels have replaced these traditional ships as ferries or cargo boats,” he said. 

The larger ships that used to serve the outer islands have all but disappeared. One such vessel still in service is "La Curieuse," which belongs to the Inter-Island Ferry of William Rose and is being used to operate the Praslin to La Digue route on a daily basis.

Strongly inspired by design and abstract thinking, Morin’s interest in craftsmanship started when he was still at school.

Seychellois couple Ricky Morin and Julia Morin created ‘L'Art Divine’ located at Plaisance. (Daniel Laurence, Seychelles News Agency) Photo License: CC-BY

“Being very skilful with my hands, when I finished school, I jumped straight into craftsmanship. I started producing simple artisanal item, using raw materials abundantly found in the environment such as seashells and sometime hawksbill turtle scale,” Morin told SNA.

Looking ahead Morin said that he is ready to pass on his techniques of producing the schooners with the youth of Seychelles, a group of 115 islands in the western Indian Ocean.

“If I get young dedicated minds, I would share the knowledge,” he said as long as they are committed. 

“It is not worth it to have people involved in beautiful ideas, but after two days they lose interest. It will be a waste of time,” said Morin.

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Tags: La Curieuse, Inter-Island Ferry

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