SUNKEN TREASURE

Divers will love Europe’s first underwater museum, Museo Atlantico, which has just been created off the coast of Lanzarote, in the Canary Islands. British artist and photographer Jason deCaires Taylor has created the eye-catching and fascinating exhibition of submerged statues, which perfectly catch the light at 15 meters below the waves.

Taylor’s pieces are moving and thought provoking; there is The Raft of Lampedusa, a sculpted boat carrying 13 refugees that’s a modern take on Géricault’s 1818 painting The Raft of the Medusa. There are sculptures of people gazing at their phones or indulging in selfies, as well as pieces that take their cues from the flora and fauna of Lanzarote. A giant mirror that will create the illusion of a ‘pool’ in the sea, as well as an underwater fountain and lighting will be added in the coming months.

This is not the first time Taylor has used the sea as his canvas; his first underwater installation, Vicissitudes in 2006, included a ring of beautifully-sculptured schoolchildren perched on the edge of an ocean shelf off Molinière Bay in Grenada. It’s now at the heart of a protected marine park and made National Geographic’s 25 wonders of the world list. In the Bahamas his 40-tonne Ocean Atlas looks to shoulder the weight of the ocean on his shoulders, while the four horsemen of the apocalypse are summoned to the Thames River in The Rising Tide. www.underwatersculpture.com

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