CORAL Helps Inaugurate Reef Exhibition at the Smithsonian
Some of the people who made the exhibition possible
On October 14, more than 150 CORAL supporters, artists, crafters, mathematicians, conservationists, scientists, politicians, policymakers, and local community members gathered at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., to get a sneak preview of the CORAL-supported exhibition of the Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef. The newly-created Smithsonian Community Reef provided a magnificent backdrop for this elegant evening in the museum's Sant Ocean Hall. CORAL is honored to support such an amazing project that promotes ocean conservation awareness and community participation.
The evening event provided an opportunity to bring awareness to the plight of coral reefs while celebrating the opening of the stunning exhibition. Rick MacPherson, CORAL's Interim Executive Director and Conservation Programs Director, gave a rousing speech that tied the community-driven art project into the work that CORAL is doing on the ground in coral reef locations. CORAL staff and directors in attendance also helped to share CORAL's message and inspire the D.C. community to come together in support of coral reef conservation.
Please take a moment to watch Rick's motivating speech. Thanks to our friend Angelo Villagomez for capturing it on video!
The evening's program also included remarks from Margaret and Christine Wertheim, co-creators of the Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef at the Institute For Figuring, as well as Elizabeth Duggal from the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History and Ambassador David Stuart from the Embassy of Australia.
Detail from the Smithsonian Community Reef
It was clear that those in attendance were truly inspired by the beautiful artwork and the strong conservation message that went along with it. CORAL will continue to communicate the importance of coral reef conservation to museum visitors over the course of the six-month exhibition through creative reef education activities. The interactive activities will be conducted by CORAL-trained museum docents on the exhibit floor.
We encourage everyone who will be in the Washington, D.C., area to visit this remarkable exhibition and be inspired not only by its beauty, but also by the level of participation from diverse communities that went into its creation. The exhibition will be open to the public from October 16, 2010 – April 24, 2011 at the Sant Ocean Hall focus gallery in the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C.