Location: Molinere Beauséjour Marine Protected Area, Grenada
Installation Date: 2006
Molinere Bay Underwater Sculpture Park was the first of Jason deCaires Taylor’s underwater gardens. It was widely acclaimed as the first of its kind. The site is now listed as one of National Geographic’s 25 Wonders of the World.
The 75 works cover an area of 800 square metres and are located in a series of sand patches and gullies between natural rock formations. At depths of 5-8 metres, they are accessible by scuba diving, snorkeling and glass bottom boats, with departures from the capital St. Georges and from Grand Anse, both a short boat ride away.
Molinere Bay suffered considerable storm damage from Hurricane Ivan in 2004 and the placement of these artificial structures has provided a new base for marine life to proliferate. A long-lasting and pH neutral cement offers a stable and permanent platform which is textured to allow coral polyps to attach themselves to the sculptures.
The park draws divers and snorkelers away from the few nearby fragile reefs which were not affected by Hurricane Ivan, including adjacent Flamingo Bay, which attracts large numbers of tourists. The sculpture park was instrumental in the government designating the area a marine protected area. Entrance fees to the park now help fund park rangers to manage tourism and fishing quotas.
Celebrated works include Viccisitudes, which features a ring of children holding hands facing out into nutrient-rich oceanic currents. Cast from children with diverse backgrounds, they are a symbol of unity and resilience. They are an example of how we are inscribed and formed by the nutrients we absorb. However, locally it was widely interpreted as a tribute to slavery due to the structural connections resembling shackles and the proximity to the Atlantic Ocean and the Middle Passage.
The Lost Correspondent portrays a man sitting at a desk with his typewriter. A collection of newspaper articles, dating back to the 1970s, covers the desktop, some of them reporting stories from a time in Grenada’s history before the revolution. The piece reflects on how communications are changing so rapidly.
Authorised by: Ministry of Fisheries, Grenada
Materials: pH neutral cement, stainless steel
Most people just see the surface of the ocean and it is hard to think of something so plain and enormous as fragile. We don’t regard our oceans as sacred and we should.Jason deCaires Taylor