The sculptural group celebrated its first anniversary on January 10, contributing to the international projection of the destination of Lanzarote, the promotion of quality tourism and the fight for the protection of the oceans
The Councilor for Tourism of the Cabildo of Lanzarote, Echedey Eugenio, believes that “the Atlantic Museum is an element of differentiation of the destination that has managed to articulate, unite and promote a strategic segment for the island as diving to higher levels”
The ULPGC is developing a repopulation program for sebadales, cradle of marine life, in the vicinity of the Atlantic Museum. “It is a limited natural laboratory that allows us to advance in many research fronts” point from the university center
Lanzarote, January 15, 2018.- The Atlantic Museum of Lanzarote celebrated its first year of life on January 10, exceeding the expectations and objectives with which it was created, which are to promote Lanzarote as a top-level tourist destination and place of reference in Europe for the initiation in scuba diving; turn the island into an international reference in the fight for the protection of the seas and oceans through the implementation of study, research and dissemination programs, and, finally, promote the sustainable growth of the island economy, in general, and of the diving sector, in particular.
It all started a year ago
The adventure began a little over a year ago. The immersion of the works of the British eco-sculptor Jason deCaires Taylor on the seabed of Lanzarote led to the launch of the first museum of submarine art in Europe, a milestone that generated an audience of more than one billion people (1,247,661,321) and a equivalent advertising value of 89,382,970 euros, according to the latest report by the specialized consultant Porter Novelli. Media from around the world echoed the opening of the “most groundbreaking installation of the moment” (Huffington Post) and followed up on its evolution over the past year. The New York Times, for example, reported the inauguration of a “museum that feeds the fish making a heartrending social comment”, making a wink complicit in the message that moves its creator. Precisely this American newspaper has returned to the Atlantic Museum recently to its pages with an extensive report in which it reviews the transformation of the planet during the just ended year from the prism of three artists, the British based in Lanzarote Jason deCaires Taylor, the Syrian – German Manaf Halbouni and the Japanese Makutu Azuma (https://goo.gl/QsHbkv).
During its first year of life, the Atlantic Museum was the venue chosen for the recording of several spots: DAN Europe, one of the most important diving insurers in the world; Chysalis Pictures, which made the recording of material for HP printers; the Brazilian TV Globo, which produced a report for its program Fantastic, and Forward 3D-Barceló Hotels, which recorded a 3D video. In addition, during the year there were six companies that acquired the visual material of the Museo Atlántico itself, which was the Italian RAI channel, which used it in a documentary; Discovery Education, in an educational video; Andrea Mendoza, for a documentary entitled “Dandelion”; Stanbrook, for the documentary “Filoxenia”; BNNVARA, Dutch television network, and Condenet Ibérica. Similarly, 230 publications from around the world requested permission during the year to use the images that exist in the Atlantic Museum free of charge.
On the other hand, the Atlantic Museum has taken the name of Lanzarote for some of the most important specialized fairs of all that take place on the European continent. Thus, the work of deCaires Taylor has been present in Boot, which is celebrated in the German city of Dusseldorf; in the Parisian lounge of La Plongée; at Eudi Show, in Bologna (Italy); and in the Immersion Hall, in Cornellá sponsoring and collaborating with the companies and certified diving centers to operate in the Atlantic Museum (EOMA).
Boosting the island economy
The Atlantic Museum received 10,731 visitors in 2017. However, “as important as that figure is that the sculptural ensemble has become an element of differentiation of the destination that has managed to articulate, cohere and promote a strategic segment for the island as it is diving to higher levels, “says Tourism Minister of the Cabildo de Lanzarote, Echedey Eugenio. “In fact,” he reasons, “we must assess very positively that 33 of the 35 companies or diving centers of Lanzarote authorized today by the Fisheries Vice-Ministry of the Canary Islands have carried out the necessary procedures to be duly accredited under the defined quality standards to operate in the Atlantic Museum. ” In addition, there are 192 certified guides of the Atlántic Museum They rediscover tourists a different way of enjoying Lanzarote through the beauty of the work of Jason deCaires Taylor and teach them “a new way to respect the environment and the marine environment”.
Indeed, for the certified diving companies, the work of Jason deCaires Taylor has been a real “breath of fresh air”. From Manta Diving, the company most valued by the users of the Atlantic Museum in the summer of 2017, he points out that the installation “has placed Lanzarote in the world. Canadians, Americans, Japanese … people from all over have come to the island during the last year to dive after knowing the Atlantic Museum through the media of their countries. ” His manager, also the best valued guide of the museum, assures that “the company has noticed the increase of clients who have started to dive during the last year, but also those who repeat every so often begin to enjoy the changes that occur. in this alive museum “. In his opinion, “it is indisputable that the Atlantic Museum is contributing to generate benefits in other economic sectors of the island such as taxis, bars and restaurants, hotels and excursion boats, among others”.
In the same vein, Victoriano Elvira, president of Aetur, which includes 29 companies and dive centers through BUCO (Buceo conejero). Elvira understands that the evaluation of the Atlantic Museum “can not be more positive”. From the tourist employers consider that “has been an addition of great importance to the island as an outstanding destination for diving, in particular, and leisure, in general, having been a worldwide promotion of Lanzarote destination without precedent.”
Research and sustainability
The Atlantic Museum is a tool of “great value” to turn Lanzarote into a place of reference for the fight in favor of marine biodiversity. The use of non-aggressive materials with the ecosystem has favored the appearance of life in the surroundings of the Atlantic Museum, as certified by the last report prepared by the consulting company for the environmental monitoring of the installation that, in February 2017, that is, just one year after the collapse of the first 60 sculptures of the Atlantic Museum, estimated that there had been increases of 228% in marine richness and diversity and 346% in the abundance of species in the area. Today, the fund has been transformed and it is usual to enjoy countless marine species in the Atlantic Museum, among which is the angelfish, an endangered species that has turned the facility into its natural habitat.
As will be remembered, in addition, the Centers and the artist Jason deCaires Taylor agreed to allocate 2% of the profits generated by the Atlantic Museum to the realization of studies for the conservation, research and dissemination of the marine ecosystem. The first one being addressed is related to the restoration of seagrass meadows in the vicinity of the museum, and will serve as a basis to undertake a repopulation of sebadales in the bay of Las Coloradas. As it is known, the phanerogams are in regression in the archipelago due, in large part, to human activity, although notable efforts are being made, among others, by the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, to reverse this situation.
In this sense, the qualified professor of plant physiology at the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Pilar Garcia, values ”very positively” the existence of “a natural laboratory that will allow us to advance in the study of water quality and, above all, in the recovery of the phanerogams, a fundamental organism in the stabilization of the seabed and for life in the ocean, as they are a refuge for the larvae of the different species “. García applauds the synergy established with the Art, Culture and Tourism Centers as it will allow them to “develop research lines related to marine physiology and environmental microbiology in a controlled and limited natural space”.
There is the possibility of collaborating with this program that seeks to recover the phanerogams, natural support of the species that inhabit our seas, through the Friends of the Museum program (amigosdelma@centrosturísticos.com).
In the field of sebadales, in addition, it is important to highlight the citizen environmental conservation program being developed by the Atlantic Museum with the aim of creating attitudes and awakening sensitivities about the importance of the marine ecosystem.
In another line of research, the Centers are working on the sensorization of the Atlantic Museum, that is, the installation of a series of devices that serve to measure different environmental parameters that may be useful for research.
During the year 2017, the Atlantic Museum was presented to a sustainability project called Energy Globe Awards invited by the organization. This contest aims to recognize sustainability projects that take care of the environment and make an economical use of energy by betting, in a determined way, on the use of renewable energies.
Similarly, as will be recalled, the Atlantic Museum was present at the 1st Meeting of artificial reefs for recreational use held in Valencia at the end of last year with the aim of making its peculiarities known to the attendees.
The Councilor for Tourism of the Cabildo of Lanzarote, Echedey Eugenio, wants to publicly congratulate “all the people who have made it possible for the Atlantic Museum of Lanzarote to celebrate its first year of existence as a decisive vector of sustainable tourism on an island that wants to be a reference destination for the initiation of scuba diving in Europe and in the fight for the protection of the seas “.