Operation Crayweed: Art-Work-Site


Operation Crayweed: Art-Work-Site

Operation Crayweed Art-Work-Site ‘demarcated’ the underwater Crayweed reforestation project in the bay between Marks Park and the South Bondi Headland.

Turpin Crawford Studio developed the art+science project in collaboration with the scientist team behind Operation Crayweed.

This ambitious environmental rehabilitation project is run by the University of NSW and the Sydney Institute of Marine Science. It aims to reforest crayweed, a foundation species of seaweed lost from the Sydney coastline in the 1980s, from Cronulla in the south to Palm Beach in the north.

The art project comprised a site-specific environmental installation and a participatory programme and performance to engage the broader community in the otherwise invisible underwater project.

A 500m-long yellow Art-Work-Site ‘safety fence’ surrounded the underwater worksite, a floating buoy marked the site and 3 ‘viewscopes’ on the headland above focused attention on the rehabilitation work below.

Both scientists and artists ran workshops with local school children to educate them about the project and create wearable sculptures of a selection of the marine creatures that will return to inhabit the crayweed into the future.

To mark the launch of the installation and the underwater planting, the students paraded the sculptures along the Art-Work-Site fence and a local school band performed ‘We All Live In The Yellow Crayweed’ – a special adaptation of the classic ‘Yellow Submarine’. To mark the end of the installation, a local community swimming group performed a synchronised swim around the buoy in celebration of the successful crayweed planting.

Sculpture by the Sea, Bondi 2016
Barrier mesh, bunting, crab floats, marine buoys, traffic cones
500m long

Helen Lempriere Scholarship 2016, Sydney Water Environmental Artist Award 2016


Event Engineers, ASO Marine Consultants, Banks Events


Artists: Jennifer Turpin, Michaelie Crawford Artist Team: project manager: Christiane Statham, workshop artists: Jade Oakley, Bella Marechal-Ross, Lauren Baylor; installation and volunteers team: Rupert Trengrove, Anna Ewald-Rice, Zeynep Berk, Paula Llull-Llobera. Peter Turpin, Helen Turpin, Sally Turpin, Byron Harford, Louie Royal, Prue Mesa, Edwina Crawford, Lauren Pinn, Bianca Barcello, Scientists: Dr Adriana Verges (UNSW), Dr Ziggy Marzinelli (UNSW), Dr Peter Steinberg (UNSW, SIMS), Lana Kajlich Schools: Clovelly, Coogee and Rainbow Street Public, Randwick Boys and Randwick Girls High Schools, Tiggers Honeypot Childcare Centre, Bronte and Bondi Public Schools band and choir

photo and video credits

Ian Hobbs Media