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MUSA
THe Cancun Underwater museum

The Cancun Underwater Museum (MUSA) project began when Jason DeCaires Taylor, an English artist teamed up with Jaime Gonzalez, the director of the National Park and Roberto Diaz, then President of the Nautical Association for Cancun and Isla Mujeres.  Something had to be done about the damage to the local reef areas. Hurricanes, tropical storms and mankind were taking their toll on these natural gardens.  The three experts came up with the idea of submerging life sized statues in order to create an amazing artificial reef area where coral reef could grow and in which marine life and fish could inhabit and breed, the underwater museum Cancun was born.

 

Aquaworld played a big part in the sinking of these sculptures in providing boats and equipment for the team.  The photos in the gallery will demonstrate that it’s not an easy talk to sink hundreds of tons of marine concrete whilst protecting the delicate features of the sculptures.

 

The underwater museum now consists of three ‘salons’ and includes over 460 statues made by Jason and some other local artists.

 

Aquaworld offers diving to two MUSA sites

 

  • Beginner Dives
  • Certified Dives
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Silent Evolution

This is a truly impressive part of the Cancun Underwater Museum and was completed in 2010. The collection consists of 450 life sized sculptures - 400 sculptures were submerged in 2010 and 50 new ones added in August 2012. The statues form the shape of an eye that helps disperse currents and tropical storms. Each sculpture was molded from real people including a British TV presenter and locals from Puerto Morelos. As with all of Jason's projects, the sculptures are made from marine concrete and promote the growth of coral and marine life. One of the greatest stories of this particular piece it that the angelfish have returned to the area after a sudden unexplained disappearance, over 100 were recently spotted surrounding the statues.
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Anthropocene

Submerged in 2011, this sculpture is of course cast from a Volkswagon and the design allows for fish and marine life to enter the crevices of the car.  The rounded shape of the beetle means it can sustain strong currents or tropical storms ensuring a safe place for the critters that inhabit it.  The sculpture weighs 8 tons and contains internal spaces for lobsters and crustaceans.
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The Banker

This sculpture is of a suited man with his head buried in the sand.  The sculpture depicts the recent denial and lack of transparency defined by the current economic crisis.  It symbolizes a resistance towards our looming ecological disaster and the poor accountability of our banking institutions.  The design supports an internal living space for crustaceans and juvenile fish to breed.  In August 2012 Jason submerged 5 new underwater sculptures to accompany the Banker.
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Urban Reef

Another addition to the second phase of the museum in August 2012 included 'Urban reef', a series of urban dwellings made out of marine concrete providing a safe haven for marine life.  These sturdy 'buildings' will also protect animals from tropical storms.  The sculptures are placed as such in order to depict an urban street or suburban complex for the underwater critters that inhabit the area.
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Bio Map

These pieces were created by an artist from Merida named Rodrigo Quiñones.  Local artists were invited to participate in the Cancun Underwater Museum project and there are now a few works submerged.   The translation of the meaning of this sculpture is 'making the world available to the fish'.  From above the various sculpture shapes make up a map of the five continents.
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Bacab

This piece was made by Salvador Quiroz.  Salvador created this piece based on Mayan Gods Itzamna and Ixchebelyax.  The sculpture has a turtle shape and has hollow inlets and spaces for juvenile fish to breed and inhabit.
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Time Bomb

These sculptures were submerged in 2012 and are copies of those found in Punta Nizuc . The clocks are ticking for the time we have left to change global warming.

 

dives to the following statues are available
for certified and non certified divers

 

More Info about Cancun Underwater Museum

Silent Evolution

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Anthropocene

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The Banker

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Urban Reef

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Bio Map

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Bacab

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TImebomb

We also offer snorkel tours to the museum’s second site

click here for more information about our Paradise Snorkel Tour and Snorkel in the Museum Tour.

 

Beginner Dives to the underwater museum:

 

LEARN TO DIVE

 

Advanced online reservations are necesary in order to secure your spaces

 

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The Dream Collector

The Dream Collector was one of the first of Jason's sculptures to be submerged in 2009. The archive of lost dreams depicts an underwater archive guarded and protected by a registrar. The registrar has categorized the bottles shown in the sculpture as each bottle contains it's own message of fear, hope, loss or belonging. The sculpture provides a haven for sea life to breed and inhabit.
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The Man on Fire

This was also one of the original sculptures from 2009.   The sculpture is a lone figure of a man with 75 holes cut into the statue.  Fire coral is a fast growing coral that was placed in the holes.  This coral was acquired from damaged fragments, tropical storms and a small portion was artificially grown.  Once the coral continues to grow the statue will have the appearance of being on fire, hence the name.   The statue is cast from a local fisherman called Joachim and symbolizes our current environmental situation.  The man is burning and unaware of this, just as we seem to be unaware of how our actions affect nature.

 

These two statues are located beside Manchones Reef. During our 2 tank Reef/MUSA dive, you can see these statues plus those mentioned under the beginner dives section.

 

More Info about Cancun Underwater Museum

The Dream Collector

More Info about Cancun Underwater Museum

 

The Man on Fire

We also offer snorkel tours to the museum’s second site

click here for more information about our Paradise Snorkel Tour and Snorkel in the Museum Tour.

 

Certified Dives to the Cancun museum, choose one of the following packages:


2 TANK REEF/MUSEUM 1 TANK MUSA

 

Advanced online reservations are necesary in order to secure your spaces

 

 

For more information about Jason DeCaires Taylor and his other works of art,

check out his website  www.underwatersculpture.com

 

Gallery

 

 

 

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