Books, Film & The Arts

The ocean plays the part of muse for many artists. Books, films, and the arts often pull inspiration from the sea—you can explore them here!

FEATURES

Photo
This four-foot long fish sculpture was created by art students at A.W. Cox Elementary School in Guilford, CT. The purpose of the Rakefish Project is to raise awareness of marine litter among elementary school...
Slideshow MORE STORIES Slideshow MORE AUDIO / VIDEO
Brian Skerry, an award winning photographer for National Geographic, explores...
Slideshow MORE STORIES Slideshow MORE AUDIO / VIDEO
The Ross Sea, a 1.9 million square mile (3.6 million square km) stretch of...
Blog entry MORE STORIES Blog entry MORE AUDIO / VIDEO
What does a bioluminescent creature that lives more than two miles below the...

LATEST CATCH

These watercolor sketches of Trapezia crabs were drawn by Frederick Bayer, a former Smithsonian coral biologist, in 1947. Trapezia crabs live on and within corals, feeding on their tissue and mucus, and protect them from...
“This shark was cruising low along the reef known as Alcyone. Her left eye...
A yellow moray eel, Gymnothorax prasinus , inside of a sea sponge in the...

DIVE DEEPER

The Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef , created by Margaret and Christine Wertheim of the Institute For Figuring , weaves...
The Smithsonian Institution's Dive Officer documents a "swirling monster" of plastic trash that she encountered while diving in Belize.
The Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef , created by Margaret and Christine Wertheim of the Institute For Figuring , weaves together strands of art, science, mathematics, and conservation. This beautiful...
"The ocean is essential to all" is one of the Ocean Literacy Principles , and it seems to look more arresting when written in Korean calligraphy than it does in any computer font. Artist Myoung-Won...
At night this lemon shark ( Negaprion brevirostris ) lurks at the surface, but often during the day they will lie on the ocean bottom. This behavior had been thought to save them energy, but in...
An X-ray image of grooved razorfish ( Centriscus scutatus ). Razorfish are encased in thin, transparent bony plates attached to their spines, which you can see in the X-ray. Also known as shrimpfish...
Memorial Day is nearly upon us. We thought it'd be a good time to think about our summer beach reads. And yes, we're taking the phrase literally. (A quick aside: As a Minnesota-native I'd argue that...
What can students do to help the ocean? It turns out, a lot! These students from across the United States and Mexico are developing action plans on ocean and climate-related issues in their local...
Harp seals are protected in the United States by the Marine Mammal Protection Act . Although they are not considered endangered, as sea ice melting earlier and earlier each year, available harp seal...
If you look closely, you can read a message in the corals. We are not being metaphorical. Barry and Aimee Brown set out to search for hidden letters among brain coral colonies two years ago near the...
Artist Shih Chieh Huang assembling one of his installations. Huang was a Smithsonian Artist Research Fellow in 2007 and spent his time studying bioluminescent marine animals . That research has...
Tropical hatchetfish ( Argyropelecus lychnus ), like the one shown in this X-ray photograph, live in the dark depths of the ocean ; this specimen was collected at about 2,789 feet (850 meters) in the...
Wherever you live—and whatever your age or walk of life—there is something you can do to help the ocean, a way for you to Find Your Blue . For musician Sam Lardner, that has meant composing and...
April is National Poetry Month here in the United States. We'd like you to help us celebrate by penning a poem in the comment field below or on our Facebook page . The ocean has served as an...
Local crafters who contributed to the Smithsonian Community Reef proved that there is no limit to the colorful reef forms that can be created using hyperbolic crochet techniques. Their wildly...
Gyotaku is a traditional form of Japanese art that began as a way for fisherman to keep a record of the fish they caught. The fisherman would apply sumi ink to one side of a freshly caught fish, then...
A gentoo penguin ( Pygoscelis papua ) mother stands with her chick in Antarctica. When walking on land, gentoo penguins waddle with their long tails dragging behind them; but in the water, they are...
If you were choreographing a dance about the ocean, how would you do it? Would you dart around like a lobster in a hurry? Dive like a dolphin? Float like a jellyfish? Choreographer Fran Spector...
After collecting, cleaning and sorting the plastic, the community came back together to construct the whale ribcage.
Subscribe to Books, Film & The Arts