Triton was born from a passion for the sea. Magnificently inspired at the sight of whales appearing in a glittering spout from the depths of the Sardinian sea. Depth: this word is the key to everything.
We believe to have understood it, but the sea in reality, from the deck of a boat in full sail, can only be admired from the surface. And for just a few moments we can marvel at the creatures that manage to break the spell of the deep blue, penetrating the surface between two worlds separated. A fleeting encounter conjured with electrifying and humbling moments. Then silence. Until the next distant spout.
Amongst a sperm whale, a pod of nimble dolphins transcend through the air. Beneath the surface*, peering through the glass of a scuba mask, the sun descends quickly, and disappears into the intense blue, abandoning us in the oblivion, without revealing anything. While sailing, the Sardinian coast frames the horizon, but we don’t ponder that beneath us are thousands of meters of water.
The seafloor is nearly unreachable and has only minutely been explored. A place so unknown to man, that only a few brave explorers have reached the deepest trenches of the deep blue. But marine life and marine ecosystems are constantly attacked by thousands of kilometres of trawl nets that leave a barren oasis in its tracks. Dragged by powerful fishing boats, following routine routes, unaware of what thrived beneath their keel, prior to their passage
The sea, our Mediterranean, is vibrant, beautiful, powerful, vital and a keystone for hundreds of species. Violent during winter storms. And calm during the hot summer days.
It is a closed sea, a treasure trove of biodiversity. A majestic world under attack, a foreign universe in danger. Cetaceans, whales, dolphins, and sperm whales are representations of this: they seem unbeatable, but still, they too are extremely vulnerable.
Luigi Grandi’s initial goal was to create a foundation that aims at protecting cetaceans. To shield these fascinating creatures from the current dangers they face. While admiring the sea in loneliness, at the helm of beyond. Luigi realized a great truth, that it is impossible to protect cetaceans if you do not protect and preserve their world. You have to understand what occurs beneath the surface, where the sun does not shine. At such profound depths where sperm whales descend to hunt for squid.
How can whales in the Mediterranean survive, if while they feed on plankton, they unwillingly swallow kilos of plastic and waste that has been trapped in ocean currents? How can these magnificent – mammals like ourselves, communicate with each other, if the sea, a world of silence, is impeded by noise? The din from thousands of propellers, making the abyss like a deafening highway. Gazing, observing the motionless surface, wonderful but impenetrable. Luigi understood that to protect cetaceans, we must first understand their world.
Where the currents flow together with nutritional and vital plankton that carry transparent and deadly plastic particles. We need to know what happens on the bottom, along with the endless sandy deserts and rocks covered with sponges, where the sea spans only a few meters deep. As well as on the underwater grasslands which crucially contribute to the absorption of carbon dioxide and are vital for oxygen production for the earth.
We need to acquire knowledge in order to protect: that was Luigi’s intuition.
That is TRITON’s mission.