Lab Work

The Return of Augustus Aquatic


In celebration of summertime and the sea, Idea Lab Digital is pleased to present The Return of Augustus Aquatic, a deep exploratory series of hybrid art by Jay Winkler. Each piece is hand drawn in pen and ink, then digitally painted to provide a phosphorescent feeling. While these may seem like fish stories, each species in the exhibit is in fact real. Enjoy:

FANGTOOTH FISH — Swimming at only six inches in length, this little guy is armed to the gills with fangs. He might be tiny, but his fangs are the longest found when measured in proportion to the size of its body. To put things into perspective, this fish's teeth are so long, were it not for a crafty adaptation, the fangtooth fish would never be able to close his mouth.

GORGEOUS SWALLOWTAIL — No, it’s not a goldfish. This species, Meganthias natalensis a.k.a. Gorgeous swallowtail, is so elusive that it doesn’t even have a Wikipedia page. It is rarely caught or seen, because it lives at depths between 250 to 600 feet in the Western Indian Ocean, along the coasts of Kenya and the Seychelles. The gorgeous swallowtail is a member of the sea bass and grouper family.

OPAH MOONFISH — Meet the first warm-blooded fish. The opah, or moonfish has a small toothless mouth, but it grows to a length of about 7 feet and weight of 300 pounds! With small fins relative to its big, disk-shaped body, seems an odd candidate for warm-bloodedness, but the opah generates heat by continually flapping its fins.

SHEEPSHEAD WRASSE — The female Asian Sheepshead Wrasse has the ability to unexpectedly switch gender, which can spark a love rivalry with a male partner. The fish, which sports a bulbous chin and a large, swelling-like appendage on its head, likely swaps because it can pass on more genes as a male.

WHITEMARGIN STARGAZER — The stargazer is also known as the pop-eye fish as these curious creatures spend long periods buried with only their eyes and mouth showing until they can catch unsuspecting prey. Oh yeah, and it has electric organs in its body allowing it to fire a deadly 50 volts into its next meal.

PLAYLIST – This Spotify playlist was custom curated to accompany the exhibit. Gotta keep those lovin’ good vibrations a-happenin’ with you.

CREDITS — All research and artwork by Jay Winkler. Art direction by Jessica Baskin, content production and graphic design by Annie Sencindiver, website development by Bryan Ceccarelli, and copyediting by Maxwell Reil.

© All rights Jay Winkler / Idea Lab Digital, LLC