Cosmic Turtle Visiting Green Earth is an interactive artwork by artist Ronni Ahmed where convergence of conceptual formulations occurs at multiple junctures. One such meeting point is found in the way the sculptural meets the architectural and another in the juxtaposition of the representational form of the turtle with its mythic recollections pictorially reproduced in its interior.
Possibly the largest turtle sculpture in the world, measuring 18 feet in height, 35 feet in width, and 57 in length, the work, made out of poured concrete, serves as a man-made alter that impart an alert on the depletion of the turtle population. The interior houses the myths and stories on the turtle drawn from various different cultures across the globe. Refashioning them in his own language of expression which toggles between linearity and heady picturesqueness, Ronni's unbridled passion inflects the stories with his own interpretive technique.
Located at Mermaid Beach, Pechar Dwip, Cox's Bazar, Chittagong, the work lays claim to a stronger sense of context through its proximity with the turtle's sea habitat which tacks in well with its primary mission of drumming up support to save this ancient endangered species; nevertheless, which also echoes in the inlay works on its exterior wall. The shells, fish bones, broken pieces of glass and mirror and other found extraneous objects appear in conjunction with elements that are sourced from the trail of waste left behind by tourists, that include sleepers, lighters, etc, are relocated on the outer wall. Thus, the work issues forth a dialogue with its surroundings where the human species while roaming unwittingly sullies nature and its primordial processes.
Funded by the Marmaid Foundation, Cosmic Turtle Visiting Green Earth is the novel attempt at addressing the issue of animal conservation. Commissioned as part of their campaign to protect the turtles, the sculpture took three months to build.
From the architectural perspective, the project brings into view new possibilities of structure – where the visual, textual and the spatial intersect. The artist started playing with the concept of the dome and converted it into the shape of a turtle with eight round windows and two doors for visitors to enter the turtledom. The structure will certainly attract tourists looking for a space to meditate on the concept that motivated the artist in letting loose an unorthodox spirit which amplifies in essence drawing on the surrounding natural splendour.
- DEPART DESK