The Oceanographic Museum’s new Polar Mission exhibition is currently open and taking visitors on an epic journey from the North pole to the South pole. The new exhibition kicked off on 4 June and covers five exciting themes spread over two levels. From wildlife, to explorers, to artefacts, to immersive technology, the exhibition is chance to feel like you’re voyaging to the world’s chilliest landscapes at opposite ends of the globe.
Become a field reporter on a polar mission!
Armed with an entrance ticket, which looks like a press card, visitors can assume the role of a field reporter on a polar mission and trigger content and information throughout their visit. At the end of the tour, visitors are invited to hand in their report, a special opportunity to express their thoughts and feelings about the poles.
Meet Explorers from the past, present and future
In the Salon d’Honneur, visitors will find themselves face to face with history’s great explorers. Selected for their contribution to the knowledge of the poles, the men and women in life-sized photographs speak about their work and their discoveries. Thirty of them are portrayed on a huge map and nine others are represented in real size. Explorers like Ada Blackjack, who was Inuit but raised by missionaries and knew very little about the Arctic when she was hired to sew fur clothing for a polar expedition. She was the only one to survive the expedition, which was led by four scientists. Or Prince Albert I, who led four expeditions to Spitzbergen, and HSH Prince Albert II, the only head of state to have visited both poles, who are also featured in the exhibition.
Enter the world of the Inuit
French anthropologist Jean Malaurie, an emblematic figure in polar exploration, donated a large part of his collections, archives and personal effects, illustrating 70 years of a life devoted to Arctic peoples, to the Oceanographic Institute. Through his eyes, videos and recordings, visitors can immerse themselves into the Inuit culture. Clothes, masks, artwork, religious objects are also on display. This part of the exhibition gives a voice to the Inuit way of life and traditions, which are closely related to nature and are currently threatened by climate change.
Travel from the North Pole to the South Pole in the Immersion Room
The wild, grandiose beauty of the two poles comes to life in the immersion room. With a projection surface area of 650 m², visitors are propelled into the heart of six different polar landscapes. First, travel to the North Pole in the company of a mama bear and her cubs before venturing under the sea ice to free-dive beside seals, beluga whales and narwhals. Then to the South Pole to visit whales, elephant seals and emperor penguins. The experience concludes with a dreamlike display of northern lights.
The Polar Mission Exhibition at the Oceanographic Museum will be on display for the next two years. Entrance to the exhibition is included in a regular ticket to the Oceanographic Museum (€18.00 for adults and €18.00 for children aged 4-17 years). The Museum is open every day from 10:00 am to 7:00 pm.