This touring exhibition developed by Antarctica New Zealand celebrates 50 years of New Zealand’s presence in Antarctica. It also marks the International Polar Year 2007–2009.
New Zealand is one of Antarctica’s near neighbours and has a long and strong association with the continent. This association encompasses early explorations, cooperation with the United States’ Operation Deep Freeze based in Christchurch, research, and Antarctica New Zealand’s programmes on environmental management operated from Scott Base.
Antarctica is a vast and hostile environment. Images and video footage in New Zealand on Ice set the scene for its spectacular visual appeal. Quotes – from artists as well as scientists – illustrate the impact the place has on its human visitors. Information panels give a profile of the continent, and background on the treaty that is the basis for the human presence there.
Panels also tell the story of New Zealand’s activities in Antarctica. They detail the establishment of Scott Base and look at the diverse scientific programmes coordinated from there, particularly in marine biology and geological drilling. An interactive display sets out key findings from research on the ‘ozone hole’.
As human society faces the challenges of climate change, New Zealand’s involvement in international scientific research in Antarctica will become even more important as efforts to understand this most intriguing of land environments increase.
New Zealand On Ice gives visitors a chance to appreciate the continent, and an introduction to the role New Zealand people and organisations play there.
Puke Ariki, New Plymouth - May 4 - June 14.
Wellington International Airport, Wellington - June 17 - 26.
Te Manawa, Palmerston North - June 29 - September 16.
Canterbury Museum, Christchurch - September 21 - November 4.
Southland Museum and Art Gallery, Invercargill - November 9 - December 30.
Bruce Mason Centre, Auckland - January 3 - February 3 2008.
Otago Museum, Dunedin February 9 - March 30.