Living Sea Sculpture's Mission

Colleen Flanigan shares why she created Living Sea Sculpture.

Artificial Reef Project Begins in Cancun

Making of Zoe in Cancun
Colleen and an international team at Todo Inoxidable 
See more videos and progress for the Zoe Project  HERE

Climate Change & Art

Climate Change and Art

Monterey Bay Aquarium

Published on Nov 25, 2015Creativity is one of the most powerful ways we can respond to climate change. This video produced for the Monterey Bay Aquarium reveals a unique interdisciplinary method to help regenerate endangered coral reefs, which are threatened by warming and ocean acidification—and Colleen has some ideas about how you can help, too.

Fractured Atlas: Donation & Profile Page

Colleen Flanigan is a socio-ecological artist. Through a combination of visual and participatory performance art, environmental science, technology, and international community-building, she creates with the intention to live in a healthy and fun world where solving challenging global problems includes all of humanity and considers all species. The sculpture in Bali was designed by Wolf Hilbertz for Karang Lestari (Coral Protection Project). Colleen helped to weld, install, and transplant.

VR Coralization (works in progress)

Colleen's VR Coralization video has been included in two Art Festival events in Budapest in October 2018.

Art Moments Budapest – Site #3 – Mikve | The Universal Sea – Pure or Plastic?!


Experimental coral reef seascape. I’d like to use it as a trial for creating a VR 360 video. 2017©

VR Fantasy Garden

For Onedome Global's "the Unreal Garden - Reality Evolved" Mixed Reality experience launch events in San Francisco this October, I had the fabulous opportunity to be invited to make Tilt Brush work amidst the mingling crowd. Here is one of the results. Audience members could observe the evolution on a monitor and some opted to come inside and experience and express their own imagination.  artist website :

Virtual Reality Coral - TiltBrush

Using VR and other digital tools, we can highlight what matters to us and develop immersive worlds to support our environment. 

The Home the Ocean Built

Playful animation of coral restoration by Danny Rico. The cartoon shows how electrolysis can create an artificial reef from steel in seawater; all the marine organisms get involved in the new habitat. Limestone minerals deposit onto the metal providing a beneficial environment for endangered coral to grow.

Watch it Grow

Stop-motion animation using 1" scale model of the DNA-inspired sculpture, Zoe, that was made and installed in Mexico. While awaiting permits, this was a way to visualize it becoming flush with life, Art as Ecology providing habitat for endangered corals and marine biodiversity. Now Zoe is in the sea thanks to so many kickstarter backers, private foundations, and international support.

Time-Laps of Coral Feeding Behavior in the Wet-Lab - June,

Balanophyllia Elegans - UCSC time-lapse

Working with Dr. Don Potts at the Marine Lab at UCSC, Colleen Flanigan has been staging time-lapse in collaboration with Stage 13 in Portland, OR. Here you can see 3 different setups of corals with the intention of observing their feeding behavior and cycles, along with whatever else we would discover. A photograph was taken every 15 seconds.

Biorock 2010: 6 years growth

Designed by inventor, Wolf Hilbertz, this electrified Coral Ark was created in 2004 at the 2nd International Biorock workshop in Pemuteran, Bali.  Coral fragments that were broken off & found on the seafloor were transplanted onto this welded rebar form.  Colleen helped weld & attach the corals with wire. Inspiring to see how much the corals have grown & how many other organisms are attracted to the refuge. Most of the participants were from Universities in Indonesia. Video by Thomas Sarkisian.

Coral Restoration Biorock "Coral Skirt"

Installation of the "Coral Skirt." Pemuteran, Bali. 2009.  Komang Astika and Made find the location.  The small sculpture will cement itself to the sandy seafloor.  Low volt current will precipitate limestone minerals to deposit onto the steel and provide natural substrate for corals.

Coral Restoration: Biorock in Bali, 2010

Footage by Thomas Sarkisian. Designed by inventor, Wolf Hilbertz, this electrified Coral Ark was created in 2004 at the 2nd International Biorock workshop in Pemuteran, Bali. Collected coral fragments were transplanted onto this welded rebar form which is part of Karang Lestari (Coral Restoration Project) . Colleen helped weld and attach the corals with wire. Inspiring how much the corals have grown and how many other organisms are attracted to the refuge.

TEDx WoodsHole 2011

Art, scientific inquiry & engineering meet with emotion, compassion & composition to provide coral reef support, shore protection & marine habitat in Flanigan's "Living Sea Sculpture: Contemporary Art as Coral Refuge."  About TEDx :  x = independently organized event In the spirit of ideas worth spreading. TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion.

TED University - 2012

How can sculptures save coral reefs? | Colleen Flanigan

Lately, our ocean's coral reefs have been in trouble. Socio-ecological artist Colleen Flanigan urges us to help preserve these vital marine invertebrates through art. Listen to how she makes metal sculptures that contribute to ocean conservation -- and inspiration.

TEDx Galapagos 2015

 Regenerating Coral Reefs to Preserve Marine Biodiversity | Colleen Flanigan | TEDxGalapagos

Read more here

Symbiosis of Corals and Tango - TEDxCancún

¿Why are corals similar to Tango? In this talk, TED Fellow Colleen Flanigan demonstrates how science and art can be combined.  

Read more here

More Videos

Coral restoration project | Zoe - A Living Sea Sculpture progress videos | Cozumel, Mexico

The Zoe Project Videos

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Wet Lab Research Videos

Wet lab research | coral reef structure research |electro-accumulation reef structure

Wet Lab Research Videos

Hundreds of Our Ocean Related Videos

Wet Lab Research Videos

watch coral restoration research development, artificial reef progress,  art as coral refuge videos

Hundreds of Our Ocean Related Videos

Hundreds of Our Ocean Related Videos

Hundreds of Our Ocean Related Videos