Welcome to the Springs Eternal Project
Our Water, Our Future
The Springs Eternal Project is an evolving series of creative partnerships initiated by Lesley Gamble, John Moran and Rick Kilby in collaboration with a diverse community of springs scientists, researchers, artists and advocates. Our goal is to work across institutional and cultural divides in order to understand why the health of our springs is in rapid decline, and to inspire Floridians to work together to ensure effective and timely solutions.
The Springs Eternal Project is a celebration of the springs we were given, a meditation on the springs we could lose, and an invitation to the people of Florida to fall in love with our springs all over again, mindful that the choices we make today foretell the Florida of tomorrow.
Explore a wealth of stories, images and information about our Florida springs and aquifer. Access the experience and wisdom of a diverse group of people, all passionately committed to researching, enjoying and protecting Florida’s water. Discover why these springs are worth protecting and actions we can take, individually and collectively, to restore our springs and aquifer to vibrant, clear and sustainable health.
The individual springs featured here are selected from John Moran’s exhibition Springs Eternal, Rick Kilby’s Finding the Fountain of Youth, and Lesley Gamble’s Urban Aquifer: Vehicles to Think With. Click on the menu to the right, or on “featured springs” in the bar above to access a drop-down menu with links to each spring.
When Moran poses the question, “Who speaks for our springs?” it’s an invitation to you, to me, to all of us.
The first step is to listen to the springs themselves, to their many intricate languages: visual, biological, hydrological, geological. If you haven’t done so recently, visit a spring and Dive In! Enter the flickering prisms of light, drift with the pulsing eel grass or dart like a turtle through glittering fish. You might encounter a manatee, an otter, or the mysterious fabrications of nocturnal beavers. It’s still a glorious experience. But conditions aren’t what they should be. Suffering from pollution and loss of flow, our springs have a lot to tell us about the state of water here in Florida.
Next, listen to the human voices of the springs, the people who’ve been researching, representing and caring for our springs and Floridan Aquifer intimately, inside and out, for many years now. There’s a wealth of wisdom and experience in these pages. Contributors include biologists, hydrogeologists, environmental scientists, cave divers, artists, business owners, journalists, naturalists, springs advocates, government agency researchers and writers —people, perhaps like you, who are passionate about our springs and the Floridan Aquifer.
Finally, decide for yourself how you wish to respond to the current conditions. Will you be a voice? Will you speak up for our springs?
If your answer is yes, ask yourself how you can best use your time and talents on their behalf. Write and share a song or a story, create an app, stitch a quilt, paint a picture, take a photograph, make a video, contact your legislators, change your water habits to conserve more, join an advocacy group, adopt a spring, adopt a legislator, sponsor springs research, talk to your families/friends/co-workers/church members, support leaders who actively support protecting and restoring springs—and don’t forget to vote!
There are as many options as people who care. Right now, our springs need the best efforts of us all. We hope you’ll become a voice for our springs, too.
–Lesley Gamble, April 2013