Hope Spots

Glazed stoneware + porcelain
43 x 42 x 29 cm

As her 2009 TED Prize wish, Dr. Sylvia Earle – National Geographic Explorer in Residence and Time Magazine’s first “Hero for the Planet” – stated, “I wish you would use all means at your disposal… to ignite public support for a global network of marine protected areas, Hope Spots large enough to save and restore the ocean, the blue heart of the planet.”

I have admired Dr. Earle’s work since my first high school marine biology class. As an artist with a background in marine conservation biology, I believe that art has the unique ability to translate scientific concepts, bring environmental issues to the surface and inspire conservation.

Hope Spots is a series of sculptural vignettes – each an idealized representation of one of the most vital marine ecosystems on Earth as identified by Dr. Earle.

About the Artist

Courtney Mattison creates intricately detailed ceramic sculptural works inspired by the fragile beauty of coral reefs and the human-caused threats they face. Her work raises awareness for the protection of our blue planet, urging policy makers and the public to conserve our changing seas. Mattison’s delicate and large-scale ceramic sculptural installations have been commissioned for permanent collections including those of the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Art in Embassies, the Nova Southeastern University Oceanographic Center and private patrons. Her work has been exhibited at prominent venues including the U.S. Department of Commerce headquarters, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the American Museum of Ceramic Art and the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art. Born in 1985 and raised in San Francisco, Mattison received an interdisciplinary Bachelor of Arts degree in marine ecology and ceramic sculpture from Skidmore College in 2008 and a Master of Arts degree in environmental studies from Brown University with coursework at the Rhode Island School of Design in 2011. Her work has been featured by international outlets including Smithsonian Magazine, Good Morning America, Oprah Magazine, CNN Indonesia, BBC World Service and Science Magazine. She lives and works in Los Angeles. To view more of her work click below.