Hope Ginsburg, Michael Royce, Joshua Quarles, Maxwell Parker

A collaborative contribution to the Coastorama installation of the Sponge Exchange exhibition. The Coastorama Cooperative rides an endangered Gulf of Mexico Bryde's whale, honoring the 100 remaining animals in the gulf and signaling the importance of collaboration to this project and to grappling with the climate crisis.

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Hope Ginsburg: object making and design

Michael Royce: painting

Joshua Quarles: wiring and lighting

Maxwell Parker: installation

Photo: Will Lytch

Everyone's riding the whale – an image and idea that struck early in the production of Sponge Exchange and became the ethos driving a totally collaborative exhibition.

Photo: Will Lytch

All of the students in the Sponge Exchange class with co-teacher John Byrd and TA Maxwell Parker – the "Coastorama Cooperative" – riding an endangered Gulf of Mexico Bryde's Whale, holding sea sponges, the original cooperative (multicellular) organism.

Photo: Will Lytch

Seventeen students, two teachers and a TA met in my backyard camper studio when the Sponge Exchange class Skyped me in from Richmond – a bit like having diorama class in a diorama. That makes me the diver in the scene, tethered to the little glowing camper, passing a sponge remotely to the folks riding by overhead.