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#14: Life Below Water

What does life below water mean?
How might artists show their concern for life under the water through their artwork?


Find out: Watch this clip to learn more about the importance of our animals and plants that live below the water.


While you are watching and listening you might like to think about these questions.

What do the words life mean?

Can you translate these words into another language?

How might artists express their ideas and feeling through their artworks?

Understanding Goal 14: Life Below Water (Primary)



Exploring the Beautiful Vandenberg Underwater Art Gallery





One breath


MUSA (Underwater Museum of Art), Cancun, Mexico 2021


World Wildlife Day 2019 - Life below water: for people and planet




Kim Preston (Australian)

(C) Kim Preston 2021.


Katsushika Hokusai (Japan)

The Great Wave Off the Coast of Kanagawa





Ken done (Australia)


Tour of Ken Done’s home


Veronkika Richterova (Czech) (See SDG #12)








Courtney Mattison (American)



Jason Decaires Taylor (British)

Is it Living or Not Living? PBS Clip

Use the strategy - I see, I think , I wonder to help you to talk about the art.

Research & Resources

Angela Haseltine Pozzi (American)

Washed Ashore Project Angela Haseltine Pozzi

Sea-Life Sculptures Made From Ocean’s Trash








Making Ocean Trash into Art








Whale Sculpture Made Out Of 5 Tons Of Plastic Ocean Waste








Here are some search terms:

  • Artworks about under the ocean

  • Art and saving the ocean

  • Art about animals under the ocean

Book List

Art Idea:
 Ocean Animals

Create a giant sea creature sculpture, for example a jellyfish, fish, seahorse or shark.


Use recycled waterproof materials like plastic bottles, tin cans, bottle tops, plastic bags, so that your artwork is waterproof.

You might need some help with drilling holes in plastics. You can use acrylic paint or spray paint on top of the plastic or permanent waterproof markers.

Our students make giant jellyfish!

Art Idea:
Coral Sculptures

Start by looking at the stunning artwork by Courtney Mattison.


Draw a design for one piece of coral.


Next make your coral piece using clay or recycled materials. 

Coloured wire, bottle tops, wrappers from snacks and pipe cleaners would also be great materials to use.

By adding written information about the plight of our coral reefs you will be advocating for change!

You could also make ocean animals from clay, paper mache or plasticine.


(C) Courtney Mattison.2021

More Art Ideas:

Ken Done

Look closely at the world  of Ken Done especially his coral reef and under the ocean paintings.


Create your own Ken Done inspired painting or drawing by using oil crayons and watercolour paint.

You could also sew your own felt underwater creature and use the Art App Creature Garden to experiment with ideas first.


Painting/ Drawing

Find a well known artwork like Hokusai’s The Great Wave off Kanagawa and make an artwork inspired by their style.


You could also make an ocean artwork in the style of a famous painter, for example can you paint a Mondrian style coral garden or a Van Gogh style reef?


Taking Action

Here is a list of ideas from the Good Life Goals that can help you to take action on goal #14.



Taking Action

Where do I start?

More Ideas

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