Posts in Category: CORAL

Nature-Based Textiles by Vanessa Barragão Highlight Ecosystems Above and Below the Sea

Portuguese textile artist Vanessa Barragão produces carpets and tapestries from a variety of different techniques, creating multi-faceted landscapes with the use of latch hooking, crochet, weaving, basketry, and felt. Her environmental works present imitation coral, fungi, and algae as three-dimensional elements in plush contexts such as the circular work viewed above which she calls Earth Rug. The piece was developed for this year’s Milan Design Week and spans nearly 15 feet in diameter.

You can shop Barragão’s smaller coral-decorated textiles on her Etsy Shop, and view more of her larger works on her Instagram and Behance. (via Lustik)

Hyperrealistic Depictions of Fish Merged With Their Coral Environments by Lisa Ericson

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Artist, illustrator, and designer Lisa Ericson (previously) paints hyperrealistic images of imaginary animals, hybrids that intertwine species. Previously focused on a body of work that merged mice and butterflies, Ericson’s newest series focuses on the creatures below, painting bright fish against matte black backgrounds. The vibrant works highlight a variety of coral integrated into fins and tails of scaly animals, as well as showcasing the groups of fish that have decided to make these tails their home.

Ericson recently exhibited this series during the SCOPE Miami Beach Art Fair with Thinkspace Gallery. You can view more of her in-process and completed animal paintings on her Instagram and Facebook.

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A Translucent Figurative Sculpture Appears Camouflaged Against the Horizon of Bondi Beach

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Recently on view as part of Sculpture by the Sea in Bondi, this unusual figurative sculpture by artist Alessandra Rossi seems to have captured the imagination of many, becoming one of the most popular pieces of this year’s exhibition. Titled Untitled (coral), Rossi says the piece depicting a solitary young girl in a dress is inspired in part by the phenomenon of coral bleaching, something that occurs in nature when ocean water becomes too warm and coral begins to expel an algae giving it a white appearance. Additionally, the work grapples with modern issues of identity, functioning “as a metaphor for the patination and discoloration of emotion engendered by the digital era.”

The sculpture’s translucent layered appearance changes dramatically when viewed from different angles during the day and at times almost vanishes against the horizon of Bondi beach. You can see more sculptures from Sculpture by the Sea 2016 here.

Alessandra Rossi, Untitled Coral. Sculpture by the Sea, Bondi 2016. Photo by Tony Wakeham.

Alessandra Rossi, Untitled Coral. Sculpture by the Sea, Bondi 2016. Photo by Tony Wakeham.

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Alessandra Rossi, Untitled Coral. Sculpture by the Sea, Bondi 2016. Photo by Clyde Yee.

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Alessandra Rossi, Untitled Coral. Sculpture by the Sea, Bondi 2016. Photo by Grace Sui.

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Photo by Brian Thomas

A Macro Timelapse Highlights the Mirco Movements of Spectacularly Colored Coral

Interested in documenting one of the oldest animals on Earth, Barcelona-based production company myLapse set to capture the minimal movements of brightly colored coral, recording actions rarely seen by the human eye. The short film took nearly 25,000 individual images of the marine invertebrates to compose, and photography of species, such as the Acanthophyllia, Trachyphyllia, Heteropsammia cochlea, Physogyra, took over a year.

The production team hopes the film attracts attention to the Great Barrier Reef, encouraging watchers to take a deeper interest in one of the natural wonders of the world that is being rapidly bleached due to climate change. You can see more up-close images of the coral species featured in this film on Flickr. (via Sploid)

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Intricately Crocheted Coral Reefs

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Toxic Seas is a passion project started in 2005 by academics and artistic partners Margaret and Christine Wertheim. The series of handmade coral reefs are meant to raise awareness about environmental issues (such as the fragile state of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef) by creating a greater appreciation for the complex design of natural formations (demonstrated through the algorithmic art of crochet). See more images below or on display at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York from September 30th until February 5th.

Human Skeletons Assembled with Found Coral by Gregory Halili

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With parched white pieces of found sea coral, artist Gregory Halili has been creating skeletal parts of the human anatomy from hands and arms all the way up to a lifesize recreation of a human skeleton suspended atop a giant piece of driftwood. The irregular coral segments are uncanny stand-ins for human bones, and it’s no surprise the artist is able to identify anatomical details within sea life due to his previous work with skulls carved from mother of pearl. Halili was born in the Philippines in 1975 and spent his childhood surrounded by tropical wildlife and abundant regional flora and fauna that would go on to influence his artistic career in New Jersey. You can see more of his recent work on Artsy and at Nancy Hoffman Gallery.

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New Ceramic Coral Reefs by Courtney Mattison Draw Attention to Earth’s Changing Oceans

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“Aqueduct” (2016), glazed stoneware and porcelain, 8 x 8 x 1 feet, all images via Courtney Mattison

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“Aqueduct” (2016), glazed stoneware and porcelain, 8 x 8 x 1 feet

Doubling as an artist and ocean advocate, Courtney Mattison (previously) produces large-scale ceramic installations that draw attention to conservation of our planet’s seas. Her latest installation “Aqueduct” showcases hundreds of porcelain sea creatures including anemones, sponges, and coral sprouting from a porcelain air duct. The piece asks us to imagine the plight of these undersea creatures as tropical sea temperatures begin to rise, asking where they might migrate to once their homes have been rendered uninhabitable.

In addition to large-scale installations, Mattison also sculpts more intimate vignettes. Her series “Hope Spots” depicts areas in our seas that are critical to the overall health of the ecosystem. Each of the sculptures is a representation of one of these spots as identified by Mattison’s longtime hero and marine biologist Dr. Sylvia Earle.

The Denver-based artist studied marine ecology and ceramics at Skidmore College and received a Master of Arts degree in environmental studies from Brown University. Last year she was named one of the top 100 “Ocean Heroes” by Origin Magazine. Her most recent exhibition is “Sea Change” currently at the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art through April 17, 2016. You can see more of Mattison’s finished and in-progress installations on her Instagram.

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“Aqueduct” (2016), glazed stoneware and porcelain, 8 x 8 x 1 feet

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“Aqueduct” (2016), glazed stoneware and porcelain, 8 x 8 x 1 feet

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“Coral Sea II” (2015), glazed stoneware + porcelain, 17 x 16.5 x 11.5 inches

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“Chagos Archipelago II” (2015), glazed stoneware + porcelain, 17 x 16 x 9 inches

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“Outer Seychelles II” (2015), glazed stoneware, 17 x 16 x 9 inches

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“Micronesian Islands” (2015), glazed stoneware + porcelain, 17 x 17.5 x 12.5 inches

Captain Coral 金城浩二が創るサンゴ礁の未来

サンゴ礁が隆起して生まれた島、沖縄。砂浜も、崖も、陸地もサンゴから出来ており、木々も植物も、そしてもちろん人々もサンゴの上。そう、沖縄の時間は、すべてサンゴの上で進んでいるのです。そんな沖縄で、有限会社「海の種」の代表を務めているのが金城浩二氏。お仕事は、ズバリ「サンゴ屋さん」。とは言っても、物産展などで良く見るサンゴの工芸品屋さんではありません。沖縄県読谷村にて、サンゴの養殖と移植活動を行いつつ、展示施設「さんご畑」を運営し、サンゴ礁の再生と海に対する理解のために活動を続ける、自称「生態系オタク」の社長さんなのです。

まずサンゴについての学習から。サンゴって植物だと思っていませんでした?いえいえ、動物なんです。腔腸動物と言って、クラゲやイソギンチャクと同類なんだそう。そして、タンパク質で出来ている身体のまわりに、褐虫藻という藻類を纏っているのがサンゴ。要するにサンゴが、褐虫藻の宿主になっているわけです。そしてこの褐虫藻は植物なので、二酸化酸素を吸収し、光合成をすることによって酸素と栄養分を生み出していると。すなわち、サンゴが出した二酸化炭素は褐虫藻へ、褐虫藻が出した酸素と栄養はサンゴへ。両者はお互いに必要なものを供給しあって共存しているのです。サンゴの美しさは、この褐虫藻の色素が関係しており、生態系のバランスが保たれている海でないと生息することは出来ません。しかし近年、グレートバリアリーフ、そして沖縄本島を含む南西諸島など、世界の各地で見られた美しいサンゴ礁がどんどん少なくなっています。環境汚染、地球温暖化により、サンゴと褐虫藻のバランスが崩れ、海の砂漠化・サンゴの白化現象が進んでいるのです。それは陸地の森林破壊と全く同じこと。十分な光合成活動が行われないことによって、海の生態系はもちろん、私たち人間の生活にも大きな影響が出始めているのです。

そんな状況をなんとかしようと「サンゴ屋さん」を始めたのが金城氏。地球温暖化や環境破壊など、世間から次々と放たれる警告以上に、氏は本気で危機感を持っていたそうです。なぜなら子供の頃からサンゴと生活してきたから。その美しさにあたりまえのように触れていたから。ずっとずっと生で見てきたから。そして、「サンゴ礁が残る、サンゴ礁が蘇る理由となるものは、全部やってしまおう」と、1998年から活動をスタートさせたのです。

当初は、「変なヤツが変なことを始めた」とか「おかしな宗教じゃないの?」なんて、言われたこともあったそう。当時、サンゴに対しての理解を得ることは、かなり困難だったとのことですが、決して氏の心が揺らぐことはありませんでした。

「だって、この島の、沖縄の始まりはサンゴですから」

Captain Coral 金城浩二が創るサンゴ礁の未来VICE JAPANで公開された投稿です。