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The Sculpture Coralarium: The world’s first semi-submerged tidal art gallery

coralarium

Artist and environmental sculptor Jason deCaires Taylor has just completed his most remarkable work to date, a semi-submerged tidal gallery exhibiting a number of artworks designed to evolve over time as they are colonized by algae and weathered by the environment.

The construction process required remarkably complex engineering techniques

The construction process required remarkably complex engineering techniques (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The construction process required remarkably complex engineering techniques

The construction process required remarkably complex engineering techniques (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The massive stainless steel structure was built in panels off-site and then shipped to the location

The massive stainless steel structure was built in panels off-site and then shipped to the location (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The massive stainless steel structure was built in panels off-site and then shipped to the location

The massive stainless steel structure was built in panels off-site and then shipped to the location (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The installation is around 500 feet off the beach

The installation is around 500 feet off the beach (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The installation is around 500 feet off the beach

The installation is around 500 feet off the beach (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The installation is around 500 feet off the beach

The installation is around 500 feet off the beach (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The installation is around 500 feet off the beach

The installation is around 500 feet off the beach (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The underwater sculptures are designed to be colonized by marine algae

The underwater sculptures are designed to be colonized by marine algae (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The underwater sculptures are designed to be colonized by marine algae

The underwater sculptures are designed to be colonized by marine algae (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The structure lines up with an infinity pool running across the entire island

The structure lines up with an infinity pool running across the entire island (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The underwater sculptures are designed to be colonized by marine algae

The underwater sculptures are designed to be colonized by marine algae (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

These sculptures are hybrids, blending humans with nature

These sculptures are hybrids, blending humans with nature (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The middle tidal level sculptures are sometimes exposed above the water line and sometimes submerged

The middle tidal level sculptures are sometimes exposed above the water line and sometimes submerged (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

These sculptures are hybrids, blending humans with nature

These sculptures are hybrids, blending humans with nature (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The installation is open now

The installation is open now (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The installation is open now

The installation is open now (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

This is the first art gallery that is designed to be semi-submerged and visitors must swim out to explore it

This is the first art gallery that is designed to be semi-submerged and visitors must swim out to explore it (Credit: Jason deCaires Taylor)

The installation is situated in a large coral lagoon on the island resort of Fairmont Sirru Fen Fushi, in the Maldives. To reach this extraordinary structure visitors must snorkel or swim around 500 ft (150 m) following an underwater coral pavement that is sea-scaped with planted corals.

The structure itself is a 20-ft-tall (6 m) stainless steel cube weighing about 200 tons, with the median tide sitting around 10 ft (3 m) up the facade. The building is accessed via a submerged staircase that rises above the water line to a dry elevated viewing platform.

The entire installation is designed to operate across three tiers, with some sculptures sitting on top of the cube, and others sitting well below the water line.

“It exists in three different elements,” says Taylor, explaining the work’s multifaceted approach. “A set of sculptures that interact with the sky and the atmosphere. There’s a set of works that are in the tidal area. They live both above the water and below the water. And then there a set of submerged works. The idea is that it’s about taking all the elements of our planet and showing that everything is connected.”

The sculptural works displayed within the Coralarium are all mostly constructed from life casts of real people, but the final results have been hybridized, incorporating an assortment of organic structures to symbolize the connection humans have with the natural environment.

This unique and ambitious project took around nine months to develop and the complex structural formation utilized high-grade marine stainless steel and pH-neutral cement. The cube’s walls reference coral patterns while also being engineered to allow currents and marine life to pass through it.

If you can afford the trip to this luxury resort in the Maldives the Sculpture Coralarium is open now to visitors through tours led by marine biologists at the Fairmont Maldives Sirru Fen Fushi.

 

Full details are available at the link below:

Source URL: Google News

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