Lynchpin – arts/ocean science conversations and collaborations

Lynchpin aims to encourage arts/ocean science conversations and collaborations that help tell important ocean stories in new ways and to link this with scholarship support in ocean science as a way of promoting an interdisciplinary response to stand with the reputable science. The Why Lynchpin and Art/Science Diaologue sections of this site enlarge on the rationale for the program and a visit to 2013/14201220112009 will outline the synergies and collaborations that are the thrust of this scholarship.

About the Site

Art works in the main frame of the Lynchpin websites are details of works by  Sue Anderson, Lynchpin Coordinator.

Artist statement:


My art practice has been a response to issues of climate change. Microscopic plankton are the lungs of the planet – the lynchpin on which life itself depends. Just as these teaming microorganisms in the oceans are responding to the carbon molecules we emit, so the rolling plankton constellations depicted in my work are saturated with carbon in the form of charcoal and liquid graphite. Disintegrating spherical forms and plankton patterning, emerge from spontaneous pours to draw attention to the fact that the ocean’s chemistry is changing rapidly in ways that will affect us all.


At a time when the signs of human influence on the finely tuned biosphere are becoming more evident, Environmental Philosophers, like  Dan Dennett, ask why we can’t consider evolution as a demonstration of mind in nature, of the intelligence involved in species differentiation and elaboration, the intelligence of forms Dennett described as ‘the wisdom in the ring’. ‘The Wisdom in the Ring’ became the title for a series of drawings which explore the balance and symmetry within the marine world as revealed by the electron microscope. From the myriad of site specific forms, four species of phytoplankton were chosen which could be overlapped into a circular or ring formation, symbolising unity, wholeness, and infinity – attributes which reflect the critical and still emerging role played by these micro-organisms.

Photographic works: Nick Roden

Photos within the main frame of the site were taken by Nick Roden during a year spent in Antarctica with the Bureau of Meteorology. Nick is now a PhD candidate at the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (University of Tasmania) and CSIRO – Marine and Atmospheric Research Division. Nick_Roden Image 1 Nick’s research is concerned with the other CO2 problem – ocean acidification, specifically the chemical changes of seawater around the coast of the Australian Antarctic Territory. In particular, the changes in carbonate chemistry (a processes that buffers changes in ocean pH and influences biological activity) resulting from anthropogenic ocean acidification. Nick’s interests include photography/cinematography, film/documentary making. Nick is a Lynchpin Scholar 2012/ 2013.  His talented cinematography is being used in a collaborative venture with fellow 2012/2013 Lynchpin Scholar, Rob Johnson and composer Matthew Dewey, in what we hope will be a new experience of ocean science. Learn more about the collaboration at The Making of a Symphony.