Graphic by Candice Cheng

It only takes one look at the news to realize the grim fate of our Earth’s ecosystems, and that we are being called to action.

Rapidly rising sea levels and record-breaking temperatures are wreaking havoc on our planet, and the recent Australian bush fires, have only proved the urgency of the matter.

The City of Kitchener council unanimously declared a climate emergency on Jun. 24, 2019, and THEMUSEUM has curated a powerful and stimulating exhibit in response.

“ALARM | Responding to Our Climate Emergency”, the largest exhibit by THEMUSEUM since “Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition,” will allow the public to face the realities of our climate crisis by engaging them with artistic installations and live exhibitions.

The ALARM features three separate exhibitions housed at THEMUSEUM, as well as a fourth pop-up exhibition “SPECTRUM | The Climate Emergency Experience” located at The Shops at Waterloo Town Square in Uptown Waterloo.

The first three exhibitions opened at THEMUSEUM in Downtown Kitchener on Jan. 24, and feature media art installations, a melting ice exhibit, and live habitats of at-risk species of frogs.

The first exhibition “Agents for Change | Facing the Anthropocene” is the anchor exhibition and was co-curated by Nina Czegledy and Jane Tingley.

The exhibition features 10 national and international interdisciplinary women artists who have produced works addressing the theme of ecological change, intersecting art with science and technology.

“MELTING ICE” showcases the striking work that local photographers Ben Eby and Brian Riddell captured on their trips to the Antarctic and Arctic circles, as well as an interactive iceberg installation.

Eby, of Waterloo, displays a series of photographs that document his trip to the Antarctic circle, and showcase the glaring effects of climate change on the Antarctic ice caps. Riddell, from Cambridge, documents the four trips he has made to the Arctic Circle between 2012 and 2019. Over the course of his project, Riddell installed cameras across vast expanses of ice to capture the erosion of the Arctic’s shifting ice tracts.

“EXTINCTION” is an interactive family exhibition featuring eight live habitats of endangered amphibians and reptiles, as well as a common octopus.

The exhibition focuses on at-risk species of frogs, such as the bumblebee dart frog and milky tree frog, as they approach the sixth mass extinction. “EXCTINCTION” encourages guests to become aware of the critical role they play in species extinction and our global climate emergency.

“SPECTRUM | The Climate Emergency Experience” is THEMUSEUM’s first offsite exhibition and opened at The Shops at Waterloo Town Square on Feb. 7.

The partnership is a result of the collaborative work between the Uptown Waterloo Business Improvement Area (BIA) and THEMUSUEM. The exhibition explores the realities of climate change by immersing guests in dreamlike interactive displays.

The four exhibitions will run through to Labour Day 2020. Visit ALARM and become inspired by the arresting and informative works of these exhibitions, and come face-to-face with what our Earth will become if we don’t act now.


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