Share this project


Share this project

A welded steel matrix, like DNA, will be electrified to build an ongoing calciferous collaboration with marine organisms in Cancun.
A welded steel matrix, like DNA, will be electrified to build an ongoing calciferous collaboration with marine organisms in Cancun.
A welded steel matrix, like DNA, will be electrified to build an ongoing calciferous collaboration with marine organisms in Cancun.
257 backers pledged $16,331 to help bring this project to life.

Recent updates


D7aa3ff3f79dadea78ff4c83e617dc85 original
6e341637a3c1abf34f4deb14d229c197 original
D66a2e28ea6cec5c06a3d46839706bf1 original
6013be1ef1e2715191c72479bacb3f5c original
4506839e868f03d4a24577d31254f01e original
2ae511e8109185ef242100490dc64ff0 original
94718a71ac42ff80fd06cc5ccc9cf783 original
51dd8c880313c73135c42dbefee5e886 original
Ea900e32d09d6861f48ad1edb8a52025 original

Art Exhibit in NY + Mexico

1 like

If you're in New York, come by. I'm gallery sitting Tues, Wed, Fri, and Sat. from 12-6 PM.  We're on the 6th floor.  Please send a message so we can be sure to meet. The artwork ties my underwater ocean projects with urban socio-ecological issues, trash being one of them. There are photos, video from street excursions as TrashTara, sculpture, installation pieces. James Tunick, technologist and owner of the gallery, and I made a prototype of an interactive coral sculpture tied to concepts of breathing using projections, audio, and movement connected to sensors.

I've been going into the streets as TrashTara collecting cigarette butts night and day, having spontaneous conversations with people about recycling them at TerraCycle, the oceans, air...

The fluorescing proteins courtesy of a collaboration with Genspace
The fluorescing proteins courtesy of a collaboration with Genspace
Interactive, kinetic coral sculpture
Interactive, kinetic coral sculpture
Matryoshka Principle : reefs within reefs
Matryoshka Principle : reefs within reefs

I'm heading to Mexico late December to complete what you all supported - The Living Sea Sculpture : ZOE. Likely be there through February, maybe longer, to ensure success. Being there makes a big difference. The scientific studies and other plans continue to evolve and expand; it would be amazing if through this art project we're able to impact the sewage water treatment system along the Yucatan as we work to regenerate the coral reefs. 

Thanks for your good vibes and hope to see some of you at THE IMC LAB + GALLERY this month!

TrashTara is made possible in part with public funds from the Manhattan Community Arts Fund, supported by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and administered by Lower Manhattan Cultural Council.

Cancun + Open Studio this Thursday

Punta Nizuc
Punta Nizuc

I opened my window just as flying over Punta Nizuc, where we intend to install ZOE.  Close to the shore by the bit of land jutting towards you in this photo, that's where we're planning. My trip was very productive and the relationships needed to complete this work are growing.  

Since I returned, I have worked with coral scientist, Serguei Rico, of Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Puerto Morelos (UNAM) to craft a draft proposing how the university, MUSA, me, the government, and the resort will officially collaborate. I love how it so clearly defines all of our desires and intentions, illuminating how much this project has evolved over the 3 years on land.

Just now I was introduced to Louis Villanueva of the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) by Heather Paffe, Associate Vice President of their Oceans department here in New York.

Louis works with shark conservation and Public Policy for EDF. He's based in Mexico City, visits Cancun frequently, and is good friends with the Marine Park and others in the area/government. That's what we need! He offered to help facilitate.

On another related global note, we had the People's Climate March here yesterday with about 400,000 people. I was with my good friend, Alyssum Pohl, who also works with the ocean. We marched with Oceana. People took so many pictures and we were interviewed by Positive Change for Marine Life and Melting THE FUTURE.  

SO, here's envisioning that the Climate Summit is productive at the big power level, and that at the Living Sea Sculpture level, we install Oct/Nov.

Back to work preparing for the Open Studio coming up this Thursday...we're on the 6th floor.


Siempre Gracias, Colleen

We have moved next door!

Heading to Cancun Thursday. Time to mark the spot for ZOE's ocean home at Nizuc Resort and Spa. Here's one visitor's view.

From DNA-Dividing at Club Med to ZOE at Nizuc Resort and Spa, transformation is on.

Roberto Diaz of both MUSA and Aquaworld (he's a major doer) has been making things happen, and the government is being towed along with approving grace.  Cheers to Roberto!

And big thanks to María Antonia Gonzáles Valeria who I met here in NY at a Genspace event. She went back to Mexico City to see how she could help through her university, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM).  She introduced me to a recent marine biology graduate focusing on corals in Pueto Morelos, Serguei Rico, who is ready to meet and see how we can work to appropriately appropriate enough coral transplants for installation with his department.  This is a big deal in Mexico - making sure we have the approvals since it is in a National Park protected area; corals are only available for projects after hurricanes, damage by boats, and through lab propagation.  I look forward to working with Serguei and Jaime, Director of the Marine Park, to ensure ZOE becomes a Living Sea Sculpture with endangered corals colonizing.

Steps!!  More soon!

love, Colleen

Movie link for 1 week!


For backers only. If you're a backer of this project, please log in to read this post.

O Magazine (plus movie coming to you!)

Hi all!

Here's a piece hot off the Oprah magazine printing presses. 

Ruth Ann Harnisch, one of the lead project donors.. tweet!
Ruth Ann Harnisch, one of the lead project donors.. tweet!

You know, I know, this project needs to be in the ocean! Please keep the positive thoughts and I look forward to sharing a great film with you in the next few days.  Watch your inboxes! I'll send links for a private online screening of a movie about MUSA.

Last week marked the 3rd year anniversary of waiting for permits. I woke up feeling a bit anxious. I went to yoga to, well, do yoga, and see if I could figure what was the way to celebrate needing to get something done for 3 years.  Honestly, I shed a few tears on the yoga matte to be real about the moments of grasping and letting go.  But it passed quickly,  so I called the Mexican Consulate here in NYC again determined to speak with the head of the cultural department. We set up a meeting for this week.  There are some great new relationships building around this project and I feel so happy about that for when we do install.   

I admit, I stay calm most the time about it as I reach out to people and places daily.  I visualize installation every day for about 20 minutes, and things are happening.  Lots of good things.

As I said, I have a movie to give to you all in the next few days, so please keep your eyes open for info about how to watch Angel Azul.  It's a beautiful film about MUSA and Jason's artwork, and the piece you all so generously kickstarted 3 years ago makes a few cameos at Puerto Cancun.  Watching it at the premier in DC back in March, I felt great to be a part of something that is so important and always unfolding - environmental health and inter-species relationships with the arts and sciences collaborating for the ocean.

Thomas Goreau and Paul Sanchez-Navarro are both in the movie making a strong case for sewage water treatment (yes!!)  And seeing all those people and places from when I was there in 2011, it was a personal internal reunion. 

Paul is a serious ecological leader in Mexico. Director of the Centro Ecologico Akumal for 10 years, he's now moving onto new environmental roles.  He will talk with Jaime, National Marine Park Director, this week.  I hope to have some news.  The new executive director of MUSA, Gena Bezanilla, is adding some efforts as well...and more, there are more connections and actions going on to complete what we started. 

So, back to writing a budget for a Creative Capital Grant for a multimedia exhibit correlating coral health and human heath: Respire -The Coral Corollary. 

Stay tuned for Angel Azul! Colleen