British artist Jason DeCaires Taylor, born in Dover in 1974, currently lives on the Canary Island of Lanzarote. Here he is developing his project for theAtlantic Museum of Lanzarotesince 2014, which will become the first underwater museum in Europe
Atlantic Museum of Lanzarote
His work consists of making three hundred sculptures of men and women from the island, for which he has previously made molds to later materialize the figures in high-quality marine cement, since the goal is finally submerge those works.
Specifically, the area of Las Coloradas, in the Lanzarote municipality of Yaiza, is the one destined for this peculiar museum, where little by little the sculptures are submerged, all of them made of a tremendous realistic air, occupying an area of approximately 400 square meters at a depth ranging between 12 and 15 meters.
Jason DeCaires Sculptures
The purpose is twofold, to attract divers and visitors who can easily see the museum, paying an entrance fee, which includes a percentage for research and dissemination of the natural value of Lanzarote's seabed. Because the second objective is that these figures somehowintegrate into that underwater space.
The material in which they have been made guarantees that they can last submerged for about three centuries. More than enough time for them to be colonized by corals and marine flora, since it is intended to be a living museum and to collaborate in the conservation of this oceanic environment.
We must bear in mind that the artist Jason DeCaires is not the first time he has proposed such an intervention, since a few years ago he already made the first underwater sculpture park in the world on the Caribbean island of Grenada, which has reached the rank of one of the 25 wonders of the world according to the prestigious magazine National Geographic. And that experience has also been transferred to other projects in the Mexican Riviera Maya and to the Bahamas.
In short, here we are before an artistic work of the most rabid actuality, since at this very moment it is being carried out and is not yet finished. And of course it is a path unimaginable a few decades ago by the vast majority of artists. However, precisely this relationship between man, art and the environment is not something new in Lanzarote, an island where César Manrique was born, who is considered the great sculptor of the island's peculiar volcanic landscape.