Skip

Underwater Human Reef
November 9, 2010 9:46 AM   Subscribe

The camera comes upon an artificial coral reef of human bodies, surrounded by fish Jason deCaires Taylor is an artist who makes life size sculptures of people out of materials designed to encourage the growth of coral reefs. Then he sinks them. Then the fish arrive. His project "La Evolucion Silenciosa", located off of Isla Mujeres, Mexico is a striking combination of the eerie with the serene.
posted by Geameade (33 comments total) 34 users marked this as a favorite

 
These are amazing. And, bonus, they're guaranteed to completely confuse the underwater archaeologists of the distant future.
posted by mygothlaundry at 9:58 AM on November 9, 2010 [3 favorites]


Yeah, sculptures. Oh, I've said too much!
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 9:58 AM on November 9, 2010


This is absolutely beautiful. I didn't get a true sense of scale until i saw the photo with a few heads above water, being lowered in. Amazing.
posted by ukdanae at 10:04 AM on November 9, 2010


I love it when art has the dual purpose of being beautiful and fucking with future archeologists.
posted by The Whelk at 10:05 AM on November 9, 2010 [2 favorites]


(on preview, damnit)
posted by The Whelk at 10:05 AM on November 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


If you look really closely you will see a statue with a sign saying "I am not Matthew Haughey"
posted by srboisvert at 10:08 AM on November 9, 2010


You will want this playing in the background while you examine the photo gallery.
posted by adipocere at 10:09 AM on November 9, 2010


Don't forget to check out the other galleries on his site of sculptures he's done in Grenada. Also, anything that is underwater and covered with sponges and coral is pretty awesome, but sculptures are extra awesome.
posted by snofoam at 10:15 AM on November 9, 2010


That is quite beautiful. Thanks.
posted by Verdant at 10:15 AM on November 9, 2010


You will want this playing in the background while you examine the photo gallery.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 10:16 AM on November 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


If I were the TSA, I'd keep an eye on this guy.
posted by MrMoonPie at 10:17 AM on November 9, 2010


Thanks for posting! I love how all their expressions seem to suggest that they're cognizant of the fish and their surroundings—especially this one.
posted by 0x88 at 10:32 AM on November 9, 2010


Isla Mujeres is a wonderfully magical island and I encourage all of my friends to visit! Perfect place to go if you hate "all-inclusive" tourist resorts.
posted by ReeMonster at 10:45 AM on November 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


This is so beautiful, and creepy!
posted by typewriter at 11:11 AM on November 9, 2010


Holy cats, did anyone else flash on the Love and Rockets story arc Blood of Palomar when they saw these?
posted by Joey Michaels at 11:12 AM on November 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


awesome idea- make some art, help the ocean. it would be an amazing site to dive.
posted by junkfunnel at 11:14 AM on November 9, 2010


this only increases my already major desire to return to IM. I thought the snorkeling was already perfect....
posted by supermedusa at 11:22 AM on November 9, 2010


The funny thing? Isla Mujeres got its name because of all the statues (small) of women--probably for fertility rituals--found scattered there.
posted by Postroad at 11:23 AM on November 9, 2010


Underwater Human Reef

Thankfully, it turns out to be a lot less mass-grave-y than I was expecting, which I view as a good thing.

I bet it would be creepy to come across in a night dive though.
posted by quin at 12:09 PM on November 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


We're gonna have to re-create this in minecraft one day
posted by The Whelk at 12:10 PM on November 9, 2010


Spectactular!
posted by CunningLinguist at 12:12 PM on November 9, 2010


Bubbles escaping from a statue's mouth? I wanted to dive in withan extra air tank.
posted by Cranberry at 12:26 PM on November 9, 2010


You will want this playing in the background while you examine the photo gallery.
posted by 5ean at 12:29 PM on November 9, 2010


Re: Joey Michaels' comment

totally a Gilbert Hernandez Palomar moment ----- in those comics, there's an artist (who's been forbidden from making art - it's a long and fascinating story) who has been secretly making statues of the citizens of Palomar and sinking them in the river for future generations to find.

Def look at the other projects of his - you can see statues from older projects that have lots of coral growing on them!
posted by Geameade at 12:35 PM on November 9, 2010


This is beautiful. I was wondering how he could have made 400 hyper-realistic, life-like sculptures of people, but these are actually casts of actual persons, mostly from Mexico. I wish he had included pictures of the casting process.
posted by elgilito at 12:46 PM on November 9, 2010


Wow. That one with the starfish on the "nun"'s face...

I must have missed that Palomar story line. The cartoon that it reminded me of is one that Robert Crumb did for Weirdo in which the population has increased to standing-room only on dry land and everyone's naked, and Crumb has to make his way to the shoreline and go out a little ways to get to a point where he's not constantly cheek-and-jowl with others. The bits where the statues are on the beach reminded me of that.
posted by Halloween Jack at 1:12 PM on November 9, 2010


I wonder if these will last longer than the terracotta army of Xi'an- and be more readily visible to people in the future, too.
posted by Apocryphon at 1:26 PM on November 9, 2010



rats! I just visited isla Mujeres in febuary, I would have loved to see this!
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 1:33 PM on November 9, 2010


One of his earlier installations of underwater sculpture, this one in Grenada, was featured in an episode of 'Life After People' this season.
posted by tresbizzare at 1:45 PM on November 9, 2010


This is pretty cool but imagine you are a fish. "These top siders slaughter us; drowning us in the dry above, and now they erect monuments to themselves in our realm? The arrogance! "
posted by I Foody at 4:08 PM on November 9, 2010


This is beautiful. Truly beautiful.

And yet, whenever you can clearly see the water's surface behind their faces, I get a sense of urgency and growing anxiety, just wanted so dearly for them to breathe!
posted by meese at 4:15 PM on November 9, 2010


You will want this playing in the background while you examine the photo gallery.
posted by rainperimeter at 4:44 PM on November 9, 2010


That's one of the coolest things I've seen in a long time. Thanks for the post.
posted by nickyskye at 3:00 AM on November 10, 2010


« Older LA Missle   |   Andrew Shirvell Fired Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments



Post