Extraordinary Underwater Art Exhibition

In the clear shallow waters off Cancun in Mexico, 200 ghostly figures are gradually lowered to the seabed.

It's the final installment of a strange underwater art exhibition, which spans 420 square meters of barren sea bed in the area's national marine park.

Officially due to open next month, the exhibition entitled "The Silent Evolution," is the work of British sculptor and scuba diver Jason deCaires Taylor.

Consisting of 403 life-size human figures, each sculpture has been independently cast by deCaires Taylor and made using unique cement mix to encourage coral growth.

Created to highlight the decimation of the world's coral reefs, deCaires Taylor told he wanted to "create an immense artificial reef, a habitat space that would encourage fish to colonize and inhabit the area."

It is hoped the artistic reef bed will attract some of the park's 750,000 yearly visitors away from the natural reefs, which need time to recover and expand.

"It's extremely interesting working underwater," said deCaires Taylor, who explained how the work had shaped a new and dynamic perspective for audiences.

"The colors are different, the light patterns are very diverse, the atmosphere and mood is otherworldly. The piece takes on a very different tone underwater - it has a missing feel to it and brings up all these questions that you wouldn't have on land," he said. Bookmark and Share