These photos are absolutely amazing. They’re beautiful to look at and also raise questions about ocean conservation, because the world’s largest underwater sculpture, the Ocean Atlas (see photo below) is under threat from oil being leaked into the water.

Some of the statues are shipwrecks, some are art, and some are from film sets. But they’re all spectacular!


 


 


 

Fake moai, Easter Island, Chile

Underwater Moai. Basic Info: Easter Island is the most remote inhabited island in the world. The nearest population center is Chile (2300 miles) and the nearest Polynesian center in the opposite direction is Tahiti (2600 miles). Easter Island, (Rapa Nui, Isla de Pascua) is famous for Moai everywhere along the coast toppled on their AhuÕs and littered abandoned in the center along the Moai roads used to transport them. Polynesians had a knack for colonizing even the most inhospitable oceanic rock. They were adept sailors, explorers, colonizers and their experience taught them the best way to escape war or famine was to sail east, to windward in search of new islands. There is no evidence that a 2nd group reached the island in early history as Heyerdall alledges Ð in fact it points to the opposite. Easter Island had military rule until 1965 and had cashless societies of fishing and farming that have since been broken apart by independence and a dependence on tourism. Rapanui incest laws are strict with everybody tracing roots to 30 or so couples who survived 19th century Peruvian slave raiding and epidemics. Legal romance was at an impasse so mixed marriages now abound on the island.

Photo © Randy Olson / Nat Geo Creative

Yonaguni in the Ryukyu Islands of Japan

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Photo © Shawn Miller

Underwater grotto, Bohol, Philippines

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Photo © Martin Zapanta

Christ of the Abyss off Key Largo, Florida

The open arms of Christ of the Abyss statue, located underwater at Key Largo Dry Rocks, Key Largo, Florida, September 9, 2007 offer peace to those who see the statue. The bronze statue was placed near the coral reef in August of 1965 after being donated to the Underwater Society of America.

Christ of the Abyss off the Italian Riviera, Portofino

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Photo © Julie Gautier

Ocean Atlas off New Providence, Bahamas

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Photo © jasondecairestaylor.com

MUSA or Museo Subacuatico de Arte off Cancun, Mexico

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MUSA or Museo Subacuatico de Arte off Cancun, Mexico

CANCUN, MEXICO - 2011: EXCLUSIVE. New life-sized statues added to the Museo Subacutico de Arte (MUSA) on the sea bed underwater at Cancun and Isla Mujeres National Marine Park in 2011 in Cancun, Mexico. Never-before-seen pictures show the fusion of art and conservation in a artificial reef supporting marine life deep underwater - made from sculptures of real members of the public. Bright tropical fish and agile divers can be seen darting in and out of the huge living art piece that contains hundreds of life-sized statues on the sea bed. Big thinking British artist Jason de Caires Taylor, 36, from Cantebury, Kent captured impressions of real people using 'life casts' and built the installation using materials that will encourage coral to grow. It will produce a coral reef and new home for a variety of aquatic creatures at the Cancun and Isla Mujeres National Marine Park in Mexico. The project, called The Museo Subacutico de Arte (MUSA), aims to ease pressure on natural reefs in the area caused by over half a million water-going tourists who flock to the region every year. (Photo by Jason de Caires Taylor / Barcroft Media / Getty Images)

Photo © Jason de Caires Taylor / Barcroft Media / Getty Images.

Guardian of the Reef statue off Grand Cayman

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Photo © Chris Parsons / Nauticam

Amphitrite statue off Grand Cayman

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Photo © Justin Lewis / Getty Images

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