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Mar 25, 2009

British artist Jason de Caires Taylor has created some of the first underwater sculpture parks, which will eventually become part of their reef environments.

By FLYP Staff

In shallow waters not far from shore, Jason de Caires Taylor places his sculptures so they can be viewed easily by diving or journeying out in a glass-bottom boat. Visitors to his sites will witness an amazing aquatic gallery, featuring installations of human figures that will slowly merge with the natural environment, forming reefs that become homes for marine life.
In this unique underwater art installation, the sculptures themselves are transformed: water naturally makes objects appear to be 25 percent larger than they are and the shifting sands and light never allow for a stable perspective. Viewers engage the artwork differently as well, as they are encouraged to swim in and around the works instead of maintaining a “safe” distance.
Taylor’s works—especially Vicissitudes, which takes the form of a ring of children holding hands—are mostly life-size casts of actual living people. Focusing on the idea of transformation, these figures are designed to become a “natural” feature of the sea floor on which they sit, offering up a commentary on how humans interact with the natural world.
Taylor’s work constantly reminds his audience that change is inevitable—both in natural and constructed worlds—and questions our relationship to the known and unknown regions of the Earth. They also show us that context is crucial, as each piece is shaped by its environment, becoming hidden and then re-emerging from the shifting sands.

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