25 May Indonesia’s First Ever Ocean Conservation-Themed Exhibition Hall Opens in Bali

On May 20, we proudly opened Indonesia’s first ever exhibition hall dedicated to the ocean and its protection and conservation in Sanur, Bali.

The exhibition hall delves into the intersection of art, science, culture, and marine conservation. It features large-scale art installations that showcase the creativity of Indonesian and foreign artists in presenting the beauty of our oceans, interactive displays that highlight the charismatic marine life of the Coral Triangle, as well as solutions to threats like climate change and plastic pollution. Visitors can also directly take conservation actions during their visit by adopting a coral, signing up for an online course, or joining field trips, and fun learning activities.

The exhibition hall launch was attended by circa 100 people, including our partners and supporters such as CTI-CFF Regional Secretariat Executive Director Dr. Mohd Kushairi Rajuddin, Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries – BPSPL Denpasar Head Mr. Permana Yudiarso, Chair of the CTC Board of Trustees, Yuli Ismartono, board members, as well as artists, photographers and explorers who have contributed their work to the exhibition. It also featured a special dance performance from Central Java showcasing the wisdom of living in harmonious coexistence with nature.

We were pleased to present a dance performance called Hamemayu Hayuning Bawana during the opening of our exhibition hall. Performed by Sih Agung Prasetya and Sujono Keron from the Lima Gunung Art Community in Central Java, the dance exemplifies the Javanese idea of protecting the beauty of the earth and promoting its sustainability. It tells the story of how people learn the value of coexisting peacefully with nature. The performers were also the same puppeteers that developed CTC’s Wayang Samudra, a collection of 32 wayang characters based on marine life. Each performance in Wayang Samudra can shed light on the distinctive characteristics of each fish species and how they relate to one another.

The exhibition hall is run by the Coral Triangle Center (CTC), a non-profit organization that promotes the conservation of marine biodiversity and the sustainable management of marine and coastal resources across the Coral Triangle. It is part of CTC’s Center for Marine Conservation. The first of its kind in Indonesia, CTC’s Center for Marine Conservation is a unique facility dedicated to ocean protection, providing an integrated learning space for professionals, school children, families, and travelers, to learn about and be inspired to care for our seas.

  “With this exhibition we would like to reach out to the public and showcase the beauty and importance of our oceans to our daily life and our future. By using art and science, culture and technology we visualize the threats but also the solutions in an interactive way. Foremost, we hope our visitors come away inspired and compelled to act and care for our seas and marine life underwater,” said CTC Executive Director Rili Djohani.

Some of the featured artworks in the exhibition hall include Weaving the Ocean by Montreal and Bali- based artist Ari Bayuaji. Weaving the Ocean is an installation made of upcycled plastic ropes found washed ashore in Sanur’s mangrove areas, which the artist and his team of weavers have beautifully transformed into intricate pieces such as the Gajah Mina, as well as large scale installations resembling giant jellyfish, and beautiful tapestries.

There is also Harmony Island by Mulyana, an Indonesian artist based in Jogjakarta. Harmony Island showcases a vibrant coral ecosystem through beautifully crafted crochet pieces made from surplus yarn from the garment industry. Through Harmony Island, visitors can dive deep into a world of colorful coral islands, thriving acropora, delicate fish and captivating sea creatures. Admiring the intricate seascape provides an opportunity for visitors to remember our responsibility to preserve its beauty. Harmony Island was made in collaboration with 25 crocheters who helped bring the pieces to life and raised crochet to an artform.

Photographic exhibitions featuring stories from across the Coral Triangle are also found in the exhibition hall such as the I Love Banda exhibit by Dutch photographer Isabelle Boon. I Love Banda shines a spotlight on six teenage Banda islanders, showing what it’s like to grow up on these remote islands, and to what extent history influences the identity of new generations. Through their realities, history and present appear to interact in the pictures, giving a varied story about culture and identity.

We also have From the Deep, a photo exhibit by French marine biologist and explorer Alexis Chappuis. From the Deep features photographs taken from the mesophotic zone or marine habitats at depths of 30, 40, down to 100 meters. Laying beyond the limits of recreational diving, little is known about the ecosystems and the photographs show how human impact has reached these depths of the ocean.

The exhibition hall also features one-of-a-kind interactive exhibits such as the Grand Blue Project by Swiss explorer Edi Frommenwiler. Presenting 60,000 video clips produced over 30 years, The Grand Blue Project is an interactive and extraordinarily comprehensive video library of Indonesia’s marine biodiversity. It documents more than 1,000 species ranging from the smallest pigmy seahorses to the largest whales. It is an important resource for marine biologists and students and an inspiring library for nature lovers.

It also has the coral restoration exhibit, featuring the Mars Assisted Reef Rehabilitation System (MARRS) system shown in real-life ceramic sculpture. The exhibit also features interactive virtual games Reef Hero and Coral Music, which enable players to win by restoring coral reefs and identifying the different musical sounds in a healthy reef. In addition, other interactive exhibits include sustainable seafood game puzzles, a wave tank simulator and many more.

CTC’s Center for Marine Conservation, which opened in 2017, offers uniquely interactive activities such as the world’s first ever marine conservation themed escape rooms: SOS from the Deep and SOS Plastic Danger. It also provides fun activities for all ages, such as coral clay sculpting workshops, board games, and Wayang Puppet performances. Through the Center for Marine Conservation, CTC hopes to engage and inspire people of all backgrounds, ages, and walks of life to take action in protecting and conserving our oceans and its biodiversity.

Visit the exhibition hall from Monday-Sunday at 10am-5pm in Jalan Betngandang II, 88-89, Sanur, Bali. For more information, visit www.savingoceansnow.com and www.coraltrianglecenter.org. Inquiries can be made via email to info@coraltrianglecenter.org and Phone: +62-811-39-400400.

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