Artist Doug Aitken's latest installation needs special gear to get to. That's because Aitken's Underwater Pavilions lives beneath the waves of the Pacific Ocean and is accessible to divers off the coast of Catalina Islands.
"When we think of where can art exist and where can it exist outside of the traditional spaces, we look at times to the tradition of land-art. Works by people like Robert Smithson or Michael Heizer. But we don't really look beyond the earth itself," Aitken tells Southern California radio station KPCC. "I think in a lot of ways, living on the West Coast, you find yourself constantly looking out at the ocean. And here we have this vast expansive space. Over 70 percent of the earth is under water. To us, our view is often very limited. We see a horizon line. We see a field of monochrome color. And I was really inspired to find a way to crate something that allowed the viewer to step underneath the surface of the ocean and see this kind of inverted planet that is there."
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