Underwater Sculptures to Raise Awareness

It comes as no surprise, that art addresses social problems, such as gender issues or poverty, but there are only a few artworks that bring attention to the important problem of environmental change. The sculpture parks created by Jason deCaires Taylor are extraordinary not only due to their role in social activism, but also because of his choice of exhibition space.

In 2006 deCaires installed his first sculptures near Grenada, in the ocean. Three years later he founded the Museo Subacuático de Arte by the coast of Cancún, Mexico, which covers around 1000 sq meters of seabed. The underwater park can only be visited by the ones who dare going deep, but earned a big name in the diving community. Since the creations picture everyday situations, like a man reading on the sofa, or a group taking selfies, the park can be interpreted as “a kind of literal anchor by which we can navigate the mysteries of the ocean deep”- writes art critic Carlo McCormick.

The coral reefs are amongst the most endangered creatures: over the past few decades, we have lost over 40% of them, and by 2030 the 90% of all coral reefs will be in danger. However, in this case the sculptures are built of the pH-neutral cement, which not only makes them environmental friendly, but they can also house tiny sea-dwellers. This way, it is impossible to see the installations the same way more than one time, since the ocean, the sand and the underwater creatures are constantly shaping their surface.

“My objects are moments in passing. As the graffiti is washed off the trains, so too are my sculptures covered by algae. Details and forms are lost forever, to be remembered only in photographic prints. But now the roles of defacing surfaces have been reversed. Instead of leaving my mark on the environment with my work, the environment is leaving its mark on my work.”- Jason comments on his work.