This public sculpture was created in collaboration with local fishermen, giving new life to their otherwise discarded material. After completing their initial purpose of trapping and hauling marine life, these fishing nets have their functions reversed as they transform into a tool to advocate for greater protections for sharks within the fisheries industry.
Created using Breton fishing gear, How the Mighty are Falling depicts eight shark fins constructed primarily out of recycled fishing nets and boating spray paint. Each fin represents a different shark species, highlighting the uniqueness of each shape and colour, as well as their role in shark identification.
Today 143 shark species are considered in peril - the IUCN red list classifies these species as ranging from near threatened to critically endangered. Combined, these figures account for 30% of all sharks. These majestic animals have ruled our oceans for 450 million years, and today they are disappearing at an alarming rate because of us - this drastic decline can be attributed to ghost nets, bycatch, overfishing, and the shark-finning industry.
The use of the fishing nets within these sculptures serves as a reminder of their responsibility in the global decline of shark species. The transparency of the netting further captures the disappearance of the sharks by allowing the viewer to see through the shark fin as if it were clinging onto existence by a thread, and may very well disappear altogether.
Installed on the beach, the monumental sculpture invites the viewer to walk amongst the giant shark fins and ponder how to stop the mighty from falling.