Page last updated at 12:36 GMT, Wednesday, 3 September 2008 13:36 UK

Artist to be hung on shark hooks

Performance artist Alice Newstead is suspended from a shop ceiling by shark hooks through the skin in her back
Alice Newstead is a former employee of the shop

A performance artist has had her skin pierced with shark hooks and been suspended from a shop ceiling as part of a campaign to end shark finning.

Alice Newstead has been hung from de-barbed hooks for 15 minutes in the window of the Lush cosmetics store in Regent Street, central London.

The stunt is designed to mimic the fate of sharks caught solely for their fins.

The process known as finning is where a fin is hacked off and the shark thrown back into the water to die.

Ms Newstead, who is a former employee of the London shop, was "hung" in the shop window at noon on Wednesday.

Shark fin soup

A spokesman for Lush said: "Alice's performance is very reminiscent of what happens to sharks when they are caught.

"When they are caught the sharks are pulled from the water, their fins are sliced off, and they are kicked back into the ocean, so they sink to the bottom and suffer a slow death.

"Fins are the most lucrative part of the shark, which explains the massive escalation in the numbers of sharks killed in the last few years."

The firm has also launched a new Shark Fin Soap - a blue soap made with seaweed and sea salt with a cardboard shark fin sticking out the top.

All funds from the sale of the soap will go to the wildlife conservation charity Sea Shepherd.

Consumers are also being urged to boycott restaurants that serve shark fin soup and not to use shark cartilage supplements, which are thought to improve bone health.

Sharks swim closer to extinction
22 May 08 |  Science/Nature
HK Disney scraps shark's fin soup
25 Jun 05 |  Asia-Pacific


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