University and Port of Vigo will promote oceanic culture among society through the fusion of urban art and science.

The rector, Manuel Reigosa, and the president of the APV, Carlos Botana, signed an agreement this Wednesday.
Artist Delio Rodríguez created a mural on oceanic observation at the Real Club Náutico

The University and the Port Authority of Vigo will join their capacities and resources to promote oceanic culture among the whole society through the fusion of urban art and science.. This is stated in the collaboration agreement signed this Wednesday by the rector of the University, Manuel Reigosa, and the president of the Port Authority of Vigo, Carlos Botana, which lays the foundations and articulates the collaboration of both institutions for the joint implementation of the third edition of the program. Scientists Meet Artists, an initiative promoted and led by the University of Vigo through the Campus do Mar, created as a meeting place and dialogue between science and art.

Reigosa and Botana, accompanied by the director of the Campus del Mar, Daniel Rey, the president of the Real Club Náutico de Vigo, José Antonio Portela, and the director of the Port Authority of Vigo, Beatriz Colunga, presented to the media one of the first fruits of this collaboration, the mural created by the urban artist Delio Rodríguez on the side of the building of the Real Club Náutico de Vigo. There they explained that the agreement aims to articulate activities to transmit specific knowledge focused on ocean observation and to organize events to highlight the importance of the oceans in the port environment, taking advantage of the possibilities offered by the Nautilus underwater viewer.

The rector thanked the APV for its involvement and recalled that Vigo “was born of the sea, born of the estuary but, although the sea is still very important for the city, we have technological and research capabilities that are very remarkable”. Reigosa highlighted the work developed by our research community” integrated in a “center of excellence recognized by the Xunta de Galicia as is the CIM” and bet on joining these potentialities with those of other actors, such as CSIC centers, in the ETEA. Precisely in this respect and responding to questions from the media, Reigosa said that “we are waiting, there are still some delays, but we are taking very strong steps and we have the complicity of Zona Franca and the City Council and also the Xunta de Galicia, so that we can bring to the ETEA the CIM and hopefully also the Faculty of Marine Sciences”.

For his part, Carlos Botana expressed his satisfaction with the agreement signed this Wednesday since, as he recalled, he is an oceanographer by training and graduated from the University of Vigo. The president of the APV stressed the importance of highlighting the value of marine sciences and scientific dissemination activities and explained that the activities organized under the agreement will also help to attract talent and new scientific vocations.

Scientists Meet Artists as a framework

The collaboration between UVigo and APV will be articulated around the program Scientists Meet Artists, whose first edition took place in 2021, and which aims to establish a collaboration between researchers from the Campus do Mar and the Centro de Investigación de la Mariña of the University of Vigo, and illustrators who develop their work in Spain and Portugal. The illustrations created reflect the shared vision of the research and artistic staff, without losing scientific rigor and with a focus on the dissemination of ocean culture and the creation of educational resources for the public and, in particular, for the primary and secondary school teaching communities. These illustrations now change support, making this initiative more attractive to citizens and increasing its impact and visibility, while improving the interaction between the port and the city.
The mural presented today was developed over the past few weeks on the side of the building of the Real Club Nautico de Vigo by the artist Delio Rodriguez, a work of urban art on the observation of the ocean that visualizes and disseminates aspects related to the marine world.

As stated in the explanatory panel accompanying the book, “knowing and understanding the ocean’s influence on us, and our influence on the ocean, is crucial to living and acting sustainably”. Thus, the mural represents, as Daniel Rey detailed, the variety of techniques, methods and data that the research personnel use to “collect this information about our seas and oceans” and the painting represents the four fundamental spheres of observation in oceanography: the lithosphere, the hydrosphere, with its biological content, which is the biosphere, the atmosphere and the exosphere. As explained in the information panel, “only by understanding the complex interconnection of these elements can we make significant progress in the knowledge and care of the oceans and their impact on the global environment”. In this sense, the director of the CIM and the Campus do Mar recalled that “much of this information that is obtained allows us to observe climate change and make predictive models to advise organizations and governments and that they are well informed to make both palliative policies and changes in resource management”.

516 square metres of mural

Also present at this morning’s event was the creator of the mural, Delio Rodríguez, a graduate in Fine Arts from the University of Vigo and Master in Drawing-Creation, Production and Dissemination from the University of Granada, who has extensive experience in mural intervention, for which he has already received several awards. The artist recounted the experience of creating this 43×12 meter mural with a surface area of 516 square meters, a process marked by both the curiosity of the public and the bad weather conditions during the weeks of work.

The work is the result of his creative collaboration with the research staff of the Marine Research Center, who brought to this project their extensive experience in oceanography and oceanic observation, which allowed Rodriguez to reflect in the mural “a very scientific image of what the sea is, not whales and fish swimming”. Located in a place with a lot of visibility and traffic, the artist hopes that it will be appreciated by the citizens, that they can enjoy it and get information, both through the information panel as well as the QR code where you can access a photomontage of the mural with interactive points with complementary information that help in its interpretation. “Who knows, maybe some new scientist will come out of here!”.

Source: DUVI

Project funded by the Spanish Ministry of Education within the framework of the Campus of International Excellence program and by the spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness, within the National Plan for Scientific Research, Development and Technological Innovation.