Tsunami debris highlighted at Vancouver Aquarium 0
The Vancouver Aquarium is featuring art created from the tsunami debris, created by Peter Clarkson, a Pacific Rim National Park Reserve Ranger off the west coast of Vancouver Island. (SUBMITTED)
Pieces and stories of debris still splashing ashore two years after the Japanese tsunami will be on deck at the Vancouver Aquarium on Tuesday, as the iconic attraction hosts a night dedicated to the disaster.
One of the night’s featured speakers, Peter Clarkson, has been collecting flotsam from B.C. beaches for the past 15 years.
The Parks Canada ranger, who collects the discards to rid shorelines of garbage, routinely melds the pieces into art. The creations will be on display until the end of September.
One of his pieces, the Float ‘em Pole, incorporates tsunami debris from one of Japan’s numerous oyster farms melded with local pieces of junk.
The self-taught artist will also be bringing along a few bundles of Japanese architecture — planks of wood from houses — to seek input from visitors on his next art project.
The project could potentially even involve creating a new structure from the old residences’ remains.
“A number of them are broken like they’ve been snapped like a matchstick,” he said.
“It’s probably the first items from the tsunami that really emotionally connected to me.”
The tsunami night at the aquarium will also feature Fisheries and Oceans Canada scientist Richard Thomson, who specializes in coastal and deep-sea physical oceanography.
Visitors can also expect to see Environment Canada representative Paul Kluckner from its committee on tsunami debris.
The new exhibition will also acknowledge the 20th anniversary of the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, according to Clarkson.
“It is a fact of life — all around the world — that there’s not one piece of shoreline that’s not been touched by marine debris. It’s really disheartening,” he said.
Event starts at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 10 at the Stanley Park Vancouver Aquarium.