The new underwater museum opened in Cannes in France and took 4 years to build. Picture: supplied.
The new underwater museum opened in Cannes in France and took 4 years to build. Picture: supplied.

Dive into an underwater museum in Cannes

By Clinton Moodley Time of article published Feb 4, 2021

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A new underwater museum opened in Cannes in France, and it will leave you spellbound.

The new attraction, which took more than four years to develop, was funded by the Mairie de Cannes and commissioned by its mayor, David Lisnard. The museum is Jason de Caires Taylor’s first installation in the Mediterranean Sea.

Visitors will explore six monumental three-dimensional portraits that is 2m tall and weights 10 tons. You will find it near the island of Sainte-Marguerite, one of the Lérins Islands off the coast of Cannes.

The new underwater museum opened in Cannes in France and took 4 years to build. Picture: supplied.

Once an unused marine infrastructure, the site was cleaned and marine debris removed to create the space for the installation. The artworks is designed using Ph neutral materials to attract marine fauna and flora.

The artworks rest on areas of white sand, in-between oscillating posidonia seagrass meadows in the protected southern part of the island. The site is safe for snorkelers and divers and easy to access.

The new underwater museum opened in Cannes in France and took 4 years to build. Picture: supplied.

Where did the museum gain inspiration for the artworks?

The six works are based on portraits of members of the community, covering a range of ages and professions. You will find 80-year-old Mauricean who is a fisherman and Anouk, a 9- year old primary school learner. Each face is upscaled and sectioned into two parts, the outer part resembling a mask, which connects to the history of Île Sainte-Marguerite, known as the location where the Man with the Iron Mask was imprisoned.

"The split mask is a metaphor for the ocean," a statement adds. "One side of the mask depicts strength and resilience, the other fragility and decay."

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