Fairmont Maldives Sirru Fen Fushi resort has unveiled new underwater art installation by British sculptor Jason DeCaires Taylor.
In 2018, Fairmont Maldives Sirru Fen Fushi opened with an underwater art installation by renowned artist Jason deCaires Taylor but unfortunately, the sculptures were pulled to the surface for depicting human forms. Revised now the Coralarium is complete with a series of new sculptures, designed to imitate coral colonies rising from ten semi-submerged plinths.
This Coralarium is the first and only coral regeneration project in the Maldives that comes in the form of an underwater art installation. The British environmentalist and eco-artist behind it took inspiration from the natural beauty of the coral reef to create artworks that raise awareness of the threatened ecosystem, rehabilitate the reef and to educate the resort’s guests about the marine habitat.
This structure and submerged artwork has been designed to act as an artificial reef that with time will provide a habitat for the expansive lagoon’s marine life – sculptures rising up to five meters in height attract fish and crustaceans with their ceramic ‘starfish’ structure with cubby holes providing a hiding place for fish and shellfish. This gives the resort’s guests close encounters with the marine species while swimming and snorkelling between the works of art with a marine biologist or on one of the specially curated evening snorkelling tours.
Having first been constructed in 2018, the steel Coralarium structure is already flooded with marine life. Hard corals, sponges and thousands of schooling fish live within these walls now, which let the light stream in through a coral perforated design, illuminating the sculptures. Those inspired by Taylor’s installation can even get the opportunity to create own marine-inspired masterpiece in the on-site art studio or plant their own coral. The guests can revisit and see their own art in years to come.
Located in the Shaviyani Atoll, the resort is a 55-minute seaplane flight from Male’ and have placed much of its focus on the environment since opening. As well as establishing the Coralarium and its coral regeneration project, the resort has installed its own water distillery and in 2020 the island will generate power from solar panels. This all a part of the Fairmont Sustainability Partnership, which focuses on protecting local environments, improving the well-being of local communities, reducing energy and water consumption, waste generation and carbon emissions, and establishing wildlife conservation efforts.