This Summer go on a guided tour or make a date with an Explorer to experience the famous members only “Gallery” formally known as the “Trophy Room” which graces the top floor of the Explorer’s Club. On May 6th on United Nations 2019 Sustainability Report that 1 million animals were on the endangered species list with unprecedented rates of mass extinction occurring simultaneously across the planet. We are now undeniably the in “Age of the 6th Mass Extinction’.
Above ‘Radiolarian Skeleton’ Sculpture hangs from rafters in historic “Gallery” room at Explorer’s Club in NYC photo credit Esteban Salazar
What a better place than to hang the Radiolarian amidst the taxidermy trophies, and collections from Expeditions of yore when conservationists and explorers were often hunters themselves from a bygone era…our recent past before the anthropcene.
This outsized sculpture depicts the skeleton of a single celled Plankton called A Radiolarian. Radiolarians, are protozoan of the class Polycystinea (superclass Actinopoda), found in the upper layers of all oceans. Radiolarians are known for their complex and beautifully sculptured, though minute, skeletons, composed primarily of silica, which comprises glass. Because of their symbiotic relationship with Xooxanthallae, symbiotic algae which they host in their soft tissues they produce oxygen during planktonic “blooms” worldwide. In total plankton creates at least 40 % of all oxygen on the planet. This sculpture of a radiolarian without its soft tissue flesh or flesh is a symbolic reminder that vast dead zones are rampant across oceans worldwide and of our interdependence with our fragile microscopic world.
For Non-Members to visit the “Gallery” please call the Explorer’s Club to book a time for a guided tour.