Ghostly figures appear in the waters of the Caribbean as the world’s first underwater park, the Molinere Bay Underwater Sculpture Park, expands further.
Molinere Bay Underwater Sculpture Park
Ghostly figures appear in the waters of the Caribbean – Molinere Bay Underwater Sculpture Park
The world’s first underwater park, created in 2006 by British Sculptor and ecologist Jason deCaires Taylor has gotten a lot bigger. The Molinere Bay Underwater Sculpture Park in Grenada is the world’s first and biggest underwater sculpture park that is also one of the most popular attractions of the Caribbean. Now the captivating installation has expanded with the addition of 31 new sculptures. The new sculptures are situated in a marine protected area off the coast of the island.
Among the 31 new additions is the Coral Carnival. The Coral Carnival is a sculpture series that is based on Grenade’s highly popular carnival, Spicemas. The sculpture series showcases iconic masquerades like the “Jab Jab”. The Jab Jab is a character with chains, symbolizing freedom for Grenadians.
Molinere Bay Underwater Sculpture Park Attractions
The 31 new sculptures were added as a part of a project commissioned by the Grenadian Ministry of Implementation and Tourism. The main aim of the project was to showcase Grenada’s history and culture. In an interview, Jason deCaires Taylor stated:
“The carnival is obviously a very, very strong part of Grenada’s culture and history, so they wanted to tell that story,”
“It’s been quite interesting learning about all the different masqueraders and the history behind them.”
Each of the 32 sculptures added to the Molinere Bay Underwater Sculpture Park was partly constructed in the United Kingdom and is based on real-life people. The majority of the new sculptures were made by Jason deCaires Taylor, and he also collaborated with various local artists for this project.
Troy Lewis, a Grenadian artist also created four new sculptures for the project. These included the Christ of the Deep. This sculpture is a replica of the statue that was given to the Grenadian people as a gift for the help they provided to the passengers and crew of the Bianca C that sank on the island in the year 1961.
Natural Transformation of the Sculptures at Molinere Bay Underwater Sculpture Park
The sculptures at the Molinere Bay Underwater Sculpture Park are made with pH-neutral marine cement and high-grade stainless steel. The sculptures are designed in a way to act as artificial reefs and harbor holes and shelters that help attract marine life like lobsters and octopuses, creating a specular-looking habitat.
According to the sculptor Jason deCaires Taylor, marine life had already made itself home with the new sculptures. Jason deCaires Taylor stated:
“There was an octopus that moved into the base of one of them, which is really nice to see,”
He also described that a family of crabs moved into the base of one of the newly installed sculptors, and a stingray can be found inhabiting another. deCaires Taylor went on to say that
“What’s quite interesting about these characters is the silhouettes are really, really strong,”
“They’re so unique that the silhouettes are quite striking from a distance. I haven’t seen that before.”
These 31 sculptors also mark the first time that Jason deCaires Taylor added a little touch of color to his underwater creations.
“Normally, they’re very gray,” he notes. “This time we used natural pigments to actually paint the sculptures.
“So I’m quite interested to see how those change and whether they’ll be colonized in any different way. Marine life is very influenced by color.”
The exhibition consisting of 31 sculptures was first displayed on dry land at Grenada’s Prickly Bay Marina, a first for Jason deCaries Taylor as his creations are mostly showcased underwater. Among the visitors who came to see this marvelous exhibition was the country’s prime minister Dickon Mitchell.
“It’s something that I haven’t done in the past, and it wasn’t planned to be fair,” deCaires Taylor admits.
“But actually, I think it’s quite a good idea to make it more accessible before it [the exhibition] goes in. I might start factoring it into all future works as sort of a longer public exhibit.”
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