Mussel Reef Towers
Visual communication and narrative. 2014-2017.
In 2014-2017, Kornelia Dimitrova and her father Ognian Dimitrov, an engineer and entrepreneur, collaborated with Sea Harmony, a Bulgarian ecological start up, founded by Arman Sarkisyan, a marine ecologist and designer of the first vertical mussel reefs in the bay of Varna. We visualised and contextualised the project, weaving a communication strategy that can make the mussel reefs story understandable and compelling. This included an infographic that visualises the impact of the mussel reef towers at a systemic level. We set up and designed the identity of Reefformers, an NGO aiming to connect society with the marine habitat, and enabling active participation in the mussel reef project. In 2016 we joined the Chivas Venture social enterprise competition, and won the national competition. In July 2017, Kornelia represented the mussel reef project and Sea Harmony at the Chivas Venture competition, as one of 31 finalists.
Vertical Mussel Reefs
The reef towers project envisions an active and living mussel reef that diversifies the habitat for many species while tackling excessive algae bloom in the bay of Varna, Bulgaria. The project was initiated in the 1990s by Arman Sarkisyan, a marine ecologist, and since then the artificial reef design has gone through several tests and iterations. From a design perspective the reef towers present an inspiring and activating way of thinking about the relationship between society and the ocean. The reef is a cylindrical tower made by woven durable plastic tubes, which act as substrate for mussels to inhabit. The tower is anchored to the seabed, and is kept upright by a float that spirals between the grid. The project proposes a living reef forest, made of hundreds of reef towers, which millions of litres of harbor water by enabling the natural filtration processes of mussels. The tower reef forest acts as habitat for many small species, giving them breeding and feeding grounds, while acting as a hiding place from predators. Additionally, the reef towers diminish the power of storm waves while staying way below seafaring depth.
Arman Sarkisyan, Sea Harmony
Atanas Dimitrov, Sea Harmony
Biodiversity Foundation Bulgaria