Literati is thrilled to welcome artist Michele Oka Doner in support of her most recent work, Into the Mysterium, a book that reveals the wondrous marine creatures deep in the heart of the endangered oceans that cover most of our planet. Michele will be joined in conversation by Jennifer Friess, the assistant curator of photography at the University of Michigan Museum of Art.
With the oceans covering over 70 percent of the Earth’s surface, our planet can be called a marine planet. Beneath the waves are millions of remarkable creatures—beautiful big whales, dangerous jellyfish, legions of phytoplankton—but also, perhaps least known, are the marine invertebrates who make up an essential part of marine life. At the University of Miami, Florida, one museum is devoted to the study of Atlantic and Eastern Pacific marine invertebrates—over 93,000 specimens. Many of them were pulled from the Gulf of Panama, throughout the Caribbean, the Florida Keys, and the eastern Pacific over the last fifty years. They represent creatures that may never be seen again as the oceans grow ever more polluted and as global warming wreaks havoc on these ecosystems. Here, in lavishly beautifully photographs, nearly 100 of the rarest, most wondrous, mystifying, and entrancing specimens are brought into the light. From rare seahorses to now extinct corals, these invertebrates leave one gasping again at the extraordinary beauty and mystery of our world.
Michele Oka Doner is an internationally renowned artist whose career spans four decades. The breadth of her artistic production encompasses sculpture, furniture, jewelry, public art, functional objects, video, as well as costume and set design. She is well-known for creating numerous public art installations throughout the United States, including Radiant Site at New York's Herald Square subway, Flight at Washington's Reagan International Airport, and A Walk on the Beach at the Miami International Airport. Her artwork can be found in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Louvre, the Yale Art Gallery, the Princeton University Art Museum, and many others. (Author photo: Bruce Weber.)