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My name is Samantha Rosenbaum and I am a senior at Bard College. Between Sunday April 14 - Monday April 22, 2013, an installation was built, opened to the public, and taken down on Ludlow Lawn at Bard College.
This installation was a part of my Senior Project. It was called Dolphin Installation.
I loved creating this installation. It allowed me to advocate something that I so truly believe in advocating for: the freedom of cetaceans.
Cetaceans, a biological group that includes dolphins and whales, are not meant to be in captivity. Currently hundreds of whales and dolphins are imprisoned in captive facilities all around the world. The cetacean captivity industry is cruel and abuses cetaceans to generate a profit.
I really wanted humans to know how awful it is for a whale and dolphin to be in captivity; thus I created an installation that mimics the experience of a captive environment found at marine facilities. By entering the Dolphin Installation I wanted humans to experience only a fraction of what it feels like to be a cetacean in captivity. I hope that after humans experienced the installation, they will join me in spreading the word about the damages caused to whales and dolphins being in captivity.
Although the installation was physically built in a week, it was a year process full of research, design planning, outreach, fundraising, and much more. And although I always planned on the installation being temporary, I did not plan on how much I was going to miss working on it and having it active on Ludlow Lawn. I am sad that it is over but at the same time I am so proud that I created something that spread awareness about cetaceans being in captivity.
I think art has the ability to challenge animal injustices and to notify humans about important issues. By constructing and opening up the Dolphin Installation to the public, I hope that those who experienced the installation will be more aware of the physical and ethical wrongs of keeping cetaceans in captivity.
Ignorance allows cruelty to continue. That is why raising awareness is so important. The installation was a form of advocacy, a voice for cetaceans, and a protest against the captivity industry.
“One has to experience being caged if one is to appreciate freedom.”- Meher Baba
“You’re either an activist or an inactivist.”-The Cove
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Rosenbaum, Samantha, "Dolphin Installation: An Interactive Installation Created to Replicate the Horrific Emotional and Physical Experiences Felt By Dolphins in Captivity" (2013). Senior Projects Spring 2013. 361.
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