museum of underwater art (MOUA) will occupy australia's great barrier reef
 

museum of underwater art (MOUA) will occupy australia's great barrier reef

seeking to highlight and perpetuate the incredible biodiversity of australia’s great barrier reef, the newly completed museum of underwater art (MOUA) features submerged sculptural works by british artist jason decaires taylor. while the world’s larget coral reef formation has long been a destination for tourists, divers, and scientists, the site is at risk from rising ocean temperatures, pollution, and coastal development. with only one work of art above the surface of the water, the submerged museum will introduce a visual reminder of the underwater, unseen challenges facing australia’s reef.

museum of underwater art (MOUA) will occupy australia's great barrier reef
image courtesy of jason decaires-taylor / museum of underwater art
the ‘ocean siren’ is the only piece in the museum that is visible above water

 

 

sited off the coast of queensland’s vibrant city of townsville, the museum of underwater art (MOUA) features a submerged collection by jason decaires taylor. the only piece in the museum that is visible onshore is the ‘ocean siren’ — unveiled in late 2019 — a didactic work that shifts in color in response to the reef’s changing water temperature. the newest garden, entitled the ‘coral greenhouse’ was scheduled to open april 2020, but was delayed due to the current pandemic. the coral greenhouse contains twenty ‘reef garden’ sculptures which will grow over time with coral to attract new marine life to the great barrier reef.

museum of underwater art (MOUA) will occupy australia's great barrier reef
image courtesy of matt curnock / museum of underwater art
the ‘coral greenhouse’ will grow over time with coral to attract new marine life to the great barrier reef

 

 

australia’s newly completed museum of underwater art (MOUA) introduces the first and only underwater museum to the southern hemisphere. artist jason decaires taylor features a reminder to those on shore of the site’s environmental challenges in real time. the ‘ocean siren’ illustrates rising water temperatures which have led to the unprecedented mass coral bleaching in the great barrier reef. algae living in the tissues of the coral is expelled, causing it to turn completely white. the work is sculpted of welded plate stainless steel and translucent acrylic, containing 202 internal led lights that change color as the temperature rises and falls. visitors can witness a change in shade from a dark blue to light blue, yellow, orange, and finally a dark red, a warning that the reef is in immediate danger.

museum of underwater art (MOUA) will occupy australia's great barrier reef
image courtesy of richard woodgett / museum of underwater art
the ‘coral greenhouse’ features twenty statues of students working with coral

museum of underwater art (MOUA) will occupy australia's great barrier reef
image courtesy of jason decaires-taylor / museum of underwater art
taylor worked with local artists and members of the indigenous community leading toward construction and installation

museum of underwater art (MOUA) will occupy australia's great barrier reef 
image courtesy of jason decaires-taylor / museum of underwater art
the 40-foot-long skeletal structure was designed to dissipate the ocean’s strong undercurrents

museum of underwater art (MOUA) will occupy australia's great barrier reef
image courtesy of richard woodgett / museum of underwater art
the site was chosen for its clear visibility, natural coral walls and sandy, flat base

museum of underwater art (MOUA) will occupy australia's great barrier reef
image courtesy of matt curnock / museum of underwater art
water salinity, pH and oxygen levels are monitored, while an underwater camera captures coral development

museum of underwater art (MOUA) will occupy australia's great barrier reef
image courtesy of jason decaires-taylor / museum of underwater art
upon its opening, tour operators will take divers and snorkelers to explore the museum sprawling sixty feet under the sea

museum of underwater art (MOUA) will occupy australia's great barrier reef
image courtesy of matt curnock / museum of underwater art
coral greenhouse is sited about two hours from townsville by boat

museum of underwater art (MOUA) will occupy australia's great barrier reef
image courtesy of jason decaires-taylor / museum of underwater art
‘ocean siren’ changes color based using data collected by the davies reef weather station

 

 

project info:

 

project title: museum of underwater art (MOUA)

artist: jason decaires taylor

location: townsville, queensland, australia

photography: jason decaires-taylor, matt curnock, richard woodgett

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