SKU: collapse Category:


To mark the 10 year anniversary of the Deep Water Horizon oil spill, Antenna announces the release of Collapse, a book about the many species that inhabit the Gulf of Mexico. The photographs in this book are a small overview of the 26,000 specimens included the Collapse (2010/12) exhibition, a sculptural installation of over 26,000 species collected along the Gulf of Mexico in response to Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the largest environmental disaster in the history of the United States.This installation was created by Brandon Ballengée in scientific collaboration with Todd Gardner, Jack Rudloe, and Peter Warny.

Brandon Ballengée writes: “The Gulf of Mexico is one of the most important and biologically diverse environments in the world. It is a nursery for thousands of marine species, and numerous endemic organisms inhabit these warm waters. Gulf seafood is an important source of food for millions of people in North America, and, as marine species migrate following the Gulf Stream, people throughout Europe rely on these fish for protein. As such, the DWH spill could not have occurred at a worse place, from an ecological and economic standpoint.

The tremendous amount of oil itself (estimated at over 200 million gallons) created an immediate kill zone greater than 200 kilometers wide, wiping out enormous numbers of marine life. Perhaps worse was the use of 2 million gallons of chemical dispersants such as Corexit 9500, which made the effluents as much as 52% more toxic than the oil itself and much more wide-spread. According to the Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDSs) for Corexit 9500, produced by the chemical manufacturer Nalco, no prior toxicity studies had been conducted before its use in the Gulf. However, several previous toxicology studies had found such dispersants teratological to marine wildlife and carcinogenic to humans.”

Regardless, these dispersants where applied in deep sea as well as surface water and, because of normal currents, spread contaminants widely in the Gulf, eventually coating thousands of kilometers of the Gulf floor with toxic sludge while, on shore, impacting over 1000 miles of fragile estuary ecosystems and beaches. A recent United States Congressional Report estimates that, after clean up efforts, almost half the oil (over 100 million gallons) remains in the Gulf. After a decade we are still trying to access the full impact of the spill.

9 x 9 inches, 80 pages, perfect bound.