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DIORAMA Video Shorts: How Coral Grows

How does coral grow? Set out on an underwater adventure to the scene below the waves around Andros Island — one of the largest barrier reefs in the world — with DIORAMA at The American Museum of Natural History. The astounding colors and shapes of the Caribbean’s Andros Reef are created by colonies of small, soft-bodied coral polyps whose hard skeletons form the unearthly architecture of the reef’s structure. While you’re there, go way back in a film reel time machine to a 1930′s Andros. See scientists and artists study, document, and even paint underwater with the aid of diving suits, in order to recreate this subsurface setting.

Features interviews with AMNH scientists and curators Melanie Stiassny and John Sparks.

Producer/Camera: Tom McNamara. Producer/Editor: Bijan Rezvani.

Designer: Ricardo E. Galvez.

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About PBS Diorama

DIORAMA is for science nerds, backyard explorers, animal enthusiasts and urban naturalists. It’s a series of digital shorts from the wondrous halls of The American Museum of Natural History, taking inspiration from the Museum’s classic dioramas and behind-the-scenes archive.


DIORAMA is an exploration of curiosity — where science, art and history all meet.


Produced by WNET’s Interactive Engagement Group in collaboration with The American Museum of Natural History and PBS Digital Studios.

Visit the PBS Diorama Website
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