Have you ever been to an underwater museum?
The Museo Atlántico is unlike any museum you’ve been to before.
Located off of Lanzarote, in the Spanish Canary Islands off the coast of Africa, the museum describes itself on its Facebook page as “the first contemporary subaquatic museum in Europe. Located in turquoise clear waters close to the coast of Lanzarote, the Museo Atlántico will be constructed at a depth of 12 meters (approximately 40 feet).”
Filled with haunting statues of men, women, and children on boats and on foot, the museum may look like some sort of cemetery at first glance, but in reality the current installments serve as a memorial for life, but terrestrial and aquatic.
It may look like Pearl Harbor or the lost city of Atlantis, but this museum’s purpose is dedicated to an ongoing humanitarian crisis.
A project of British artist Jason deCaires Taylor, the underwater memorial pays tribute to the world’s refugees and displaced peoples.
DeCaires Taylor has previously worked on partially or completely submerged sculptures in England, Mexico, and the Bahamas, but this is his first installment focused on the AfroEuropean refugee crisis.
The museum, which opens on February 25, is accessible by boats with clear bottoms or to scuba divers.
Aside from the refugee-focused art, there is another installment at the Museo Atlántico called The Rubicon, which is representative of climate change. The sculptures are made of a pH-neutral cement that will attract aquatic life and ultimately become an artificial reef.