The BlueLab Preservation Society has unveiled the designs for Miami’s first ever underwater sculpture park, ReefLine, in partnership with the City of Miami Beach and Coral Morphologic. To be built in phases, the underwater park will be nine-miles long and trail down a depth of 10-25 feet into the ocean. The first mile will be completed and will mostly open to the visitors in December 2021.
Accessible to the visitors only through sea diving, the ReefLine will feature artificial reefs, a planned snorkel trail and environmentally significant art installations by renowned international artists. In pre-Covid times, December was typically the month for annual Art Basel Miami, while this year the art fair had to be cancelled due to the pandemic. However, in 2021, whether The ReefLine project will be a part of the exhibition is yet to be decided.
This underwater marvel is located on the shorelines of the South Miami Beach. Putting the entire design of the ReefLine together will be its Argentine curator and Artistic Director Ximena Caminos, Dutch architectural firm OMA’s NY-based partner Shohei Shigematsu and the University of Miami’s scientists.
Argentine conceptual artist Leandro Erlich is said to be one of the first ones to complete his artwork underwater, inspired by his 2019 Miami Art Week installation that showed sand-covered cars and traffic jam to raise awareness on climate change.
“The Reefline is a singular investment in civic infrastructure, public art and environmental protection that will pay dividends over the coming decades and attract ecologically-minded tourists and art lovers,” says Ximena Caminos in a press statement.
OMA New York explains in an Instagram post about its design plans. It says, the ReefLine will exhibit a geometric, concrete modular structure built on the topography of Miami beach’s seabed. The breakwater (sea barrier) will aid in the growth of corals, provide coastal resilience and habitat to the endangered marine life, in form of artificial reefs.
Funding support for this art project has been offered by multiple institutions, including the Knight Foundation, Blavatnik Family Foundation, Miami’s local tourism boards and hotels and some art collectors, too. You can read more about the ReefLine here.