Sunday, September 16, 2012

Pteropods and the Arts II

Gareth here. Dedicated followers of this blog will recall that last year during the first cruise of our Ocean Acidification and Pteropods Study we had just started a collaboration with sculptor Cornelia Kubler Kavanagh. Earlier this year Cornelia's show, The Pteropod Project: charismatic microfauna opened at the Blue Mountain Gallery in NYC. Cornelia carved some of our favorite shelled (thecosome) pteropods, Limacina helicina and Limacina retroversa, as well as the predatory naked (gymnosome) pteropod Clione limacina, which feeds exclusively on its shelled cousins. Cornelia's pieces show via her medium of sculpture how she imagines these animals might respond to the more acidic conditions of the future ocean. This is exactly what we're doing via our project, only through the 'medium' of science. For the show, our group contributed photographs, text, and some 'specimen boards' of actual pteropod shells, to complement the artwork and provide context.

Below are some photographs of the opening reception, the sculptures, and the animals that inspired them. Hopefully you find these animals as charismatic as Cornelia and we do!

Cornelia's Limacina helicina


Cornelia's Limacina retroversa
The Pteropod Project at Blue Mountain Gallery [Photo: D. Allison]
Cornelia's Limacina retroversa installed in Blue Mountain Gallery [Photo: D. Allison]
Opening reception. Left to right: Nicole Smith, Gareth Lawson, Nancy Copley, Cornelia Kavanagh, Unknown gallery visitor. [Photo: R. Schmitt]
Opening reception, Clione limacina in foreground [Photo: R. Schmitt]
One of the specimen boards (with magnifying glass) our group provided for the show [Photo: G. Lawson]
Limacina helicina sampled during our cruise [Photo: L. Roger
Clione limacina sampled during our cruise [Photo: L. Roger]

4 comments:

  1. Great story and fantastic intersection of art and science!

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