Europe's First Underwater Sculpture Museum

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The island of Lanzarote in the Canary Islands, Spain, has set up of the first set of sculptures in what will be the first completely underwater museum in Europe. The museum is located off the coast of Lanzarote at a depth of 12-14 meters and features the works of British artist Jason deCaires Taylor, who has created similar works in both Cancun, Mexico and Grenada in the West Indies. The sculptures on display include several human figures representing people engaging in mobile phones, walking, taking pictures and selfies. Another installation titled ‘the raft of lampedusa’ depicts a boat of figures desperately waiting for treatment and aid, representing the ongoing refugee crisis. The underwater sculptures will eventually attract and promote growth of plant and animal life, symbolizing the symbiotic relationship humans have with nature.

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A lot of marine life seek for shelter from predators, so they naturally gravitate toward submerged objects. As a diver, Taylor knows that if you place any object underwater they’re very quickly colonized.

Taylor’s team only chooses sites he describes as “barren and desolate.” Sometimes he positions the sculptures as a diversion from areas that gets lot of tourists so as to lure them away from the fragile and dangerous area.

The sculptures are made from a very inert type of marine cement designed to last for hundreds of years. He avoids using metals because they are corrosive and pollute the environment.

“The longer they are underwater the more the layers of calcium deposit will start to form, so they’ll start to get more and more unrecognizable over time,” Taylor told Good. “That’s one of the reasons I start out with a simple image or quite often a human figure, because I know however much you disfigure the human body you can still recognize some part of it as some identifying feature you can relate to.”

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via Design Boom

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