Spencer Tunick, the American artist famous for works that feature large numbers of naked people, plans to create an installation of nude figures later this year at the Dead Sea, one of the 28 Official New7Wonders of Nature Finalists.
“He realizes the value of doing it here because it will bring widespread media attention to the Dead Sea,” Tunick’s friend, Tel Aviv resident Ari Fruchter, told the Jerusalem Post. Spencer Tunick hopes that his Dead Sea installation will run parallel to the New7Wonders of Nature campaign, according to Fruchter.
Fruchter emphasized that in addition to creating a beautiful artwork, the installation will help focus attention to the need to protect a body of water that is common to three different peoples — Israelis, Palestinians and Jordanians — and that is in serious danger of disappearing in the future.
The project has faced a number of challenges due to sensitivity towards displays of nudity in the region. “We’re not going to do it to disturb people, and we’re not going to do it in a religious neighbourhood,” Fruchter said, noting that similar installations in religiously Catholic locations such as Mexico City and Venezuela did not create problems. Fruchter told the Jerusalem Post that Tunick will be doing his best to keep the installation as private as possible, “to do it in a way that doesn’t offend people.”
The “Naked Sea” concept has launched a campaign on the fundraising website Kickstarter that will run through 6 June and which aims to raise $60,000 to finance the installation.