Daily Update: Whimsical, weird and wonderful
23 deg 52.34S
Longitude: 69 deg 35.29E
Wind Direction: SSE
Wind Speed: 10 Knots
Sea State 1-2
Swell(s) Height: 3-5 Foot
Sea Temperature: 78°F (25.9°C)
Barometric Pressure: 1013.8 MB
Visibility: 18+ Nautical Miles
San Francisco-based artist Alp Ozberker designed this hydrothermal vent scene.
By Amy Nevala
In artist Alp Ozberkers deep-sea vent world, anemones
have jagged teeth, starfish pucker red lips and visitors
drift through black smokers in yellow submarines.
The California-based artist may be among the first
to show shrimp, black smokers and even the submersible Alvin in
Geologist Dan Fornari commissioned Alp to create
vent life etchings last year after meeting him at a San Francisco
art festival. The result was eight etchings, each portraying a
different vent scene. Often, the organisms have exaggerated or
modified physical features like teeth or spikes or extra claws.
I liked the whimsical nature of the etchings, and I knew he could portray
the weirdness and beauty we see at the seafloor, said Dan, who has the
etchings hanging in his Woods Hole office. He was using very abstract shapes
I knew would lend themselves to the vent creatures.
Painting tube worms, bacteria and smokers was a first
for Alp, a professionally-trained artist. But he is a scuba diver
and loves everything about the ocean, including
reefs, seas, atolls, you name it. Alp learned what the vent organisms look
like from video and photos Dan sent him, then used his imagination for added
twists like green jellyfish and yellow-eyed fish with red eyelashes.
I do not know any other artists [painting] vents because it is a specialty
theme, said Alp in a recent Email.
Alp works in a medium called Etching Intaglio. He
uses acids on copper plates, then prints the images on pure rag
papers. He hand-paints the vivid blues, greens, yellows and reds
with watercolor paints.
Tonight we are looking at vent creatures on the seafloor
through the eyes of Jasons video cameras. Perhaps not as fanciful, but every bit as wild and
wonderful as those portrayed in Alps etchings.
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