Welcome to the website
of Prof. Dr. Hans Hass
Contact and Comments: Hans-Hass-Institut
Dear diving enthusiasts and friends of the underwater world,
I am very happy that this year´s laureate of the Hans Hass Award is a dedicated marine biologist and a very talented underwater photographer: Laurent Ballesta!
When I read Laurent Ballesta´s biography, it reminded me of my own beginnings. I also tried to get people to know and understand the oceans´ beauty by the means of underwater photography and films, and I promoted the protection of this invaluable habitat. I also used a soundless closed-circuit breathing apparatus to take my pictures undisturbedly. Back then, I was not able to dive as deep as Laurent Ballesta can do today by using mixed gas, but two of our diving sites aren´t located too far from each other: Whereas Laurent Ballesta went down to 192 meters off the Villefranche-sur-Mer coast, staying there for more than six hours, I first had to content myself with the dive time a few deep breaths allowed me at the Cap d’Antibes. Later, my scuba gear that I invented in 1942 opened the doors to the underwater world.
Regardless many decades lying between my experiences and those of Laurent Ballesta we share the same spirit. We are driven by an idea, a vision.
I would like to thank Swiss watch manufacturer BLANCPAIN and its President & CEO Marc A. Hayek, who have sponsored this award ceremony. I would also like to thank Krov Menuhin, Chairman of the Award Committee.
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