AN IMMERSIVE AND INTERACTIVE EXPERIENCE
OUT OF THE ORDINARY FOR ALL
This summer, become a real field reporter and go on a mission to the heart of the poles at the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco,
to meet their emblematic ecosystems!
The polar worlds in the heart of the Oceanographic Museum
Projection walls 9m high!
a trip in 6 acts
AND HER CUBS ON THE PACK ICE
This majestic emblem of the Far North, the polar bear, is an endangered species, and the number of individuals has a tendency to decline. There are two main reasons for this: global warming, which is causing the disappearance of its habitat, and melting ice which is putting its search for food at risk. Especially as its prey, principally certain species of seals, are endangered for the same reasons. These giants whose life is closely linked to pack ice are gradually moving away from the northern regions and sometimes moving dangerously close to villages in search of food.
To illustrate their vulnerable situation, the polar bears are shown in a compromised decor. The collapse of whole sections of icebergs and the constant cracking of the ice under the feet of the visitors are reminders of how precarious their habitat is.
UNDER THE PACK ICE, INTERACTING WITH BELUGAS, SEALS AND NARWHALS
To escape from predators, seals usually seek refuge on pieces of pack ice on the open sea. Because of the increasingly rapid melting of these ice floes, these large mammals are forced to adapt their lifestyle and travel greater distances in search of new shelters. For their part, belugas are endangered by pollution and disturbed by the exploitation of underwater mineral wealth. These large cetaceans, also called white whales, are being forced to dive deeper and for much longer to find food.
By interacting with these species, visitors are led to feel empathy for these mammals. By becoming aware of their environment, they will realise that a whole ecosystem is being modified and, as a result, more fragile.
KILLER WHALES LEAP OUT OF THE WATER WHILE SEA ELEPHANTS LOUNGE ON THE SHORES
The Antarctic region possesses a rich, unique biodiversity where killer whales and sea elephants have evolved far from all human predation for thousands of years. Today, however, humans no longer hide their claims to these distant lands: killer whale overfishing has begun.
Immersed in the sublime decor of the South Pole, between the water ballet of these majestic marine mammals and the strident cries of the sterns and the colonies of sea elephants, visitors grasp the reality of a world totally unknown to them, while at the same time they become aware of the urgent need to protect this world.
FEEDING TIME FOR THE WHALES
Krill, the base of the food chain, is the diet of many underwater species. Yet, the abundance of these tiny crustaceans is also endangered by overfishing.
Witnessing the gargantuan meal of humpback whales reveals not only how organised they are and their clever hunting methods, but also their dependence on this food.
A COLONY OF PENGUINS IN A BLIZZARD
The famous emperor penguins of the Antarctic have developed a wonderful globally unique organised lifestyle which allows them to survive in this particularly hostile environment. However, they too are endangered by the lack of food resources, global warming and melting ice.
Adults have to travel further and further out at sea to find food at the risk of returning too late to feed their chicks. Thus weakened, penguin populations tend to decline.
Wrapped in the blizzard at the centre of the penguin colonies, visitors can try to remove the snow in order to see them. By becoming aware of the bitterness of the climate conditions the public will come to appreciate the exceptional nature of their environment.
POLAR AURORAS IN THE STARRY ANTARCTIC SKY
This final scene is a serene invitation to be enraptured by the permanent source of inspiration which is nature. A lyrical conclusion where the subtle and the fragile mingle to magnify the magnetic and atmospheric phenomena responsible for this celestial spectacle.
Technology Serving Knowledge
Contemplating polar auroras, diving beneath icebergs in search of seals, beluga whales and narwhals, espying penguins through the blizzard… Or how can the limits of reality be pushed back to offer a unique experience which mobilises living beings? The “IMMERSION” room, with almost 650m2 of projection space, offers to thousands of visitors the unique and deeply moving sensation of being at the poles.
A journey in which they can interact with the content, the environment and the species.
This experience which is part of the “Polar Mission” exhibition and the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco was created thanks to a virtual replica of these extreme regions and the species which inhabit them. This change of scenery was achieved thanks to exceptional technologies and monumental projection equipment. The whole project was scripted by a design team in close collaboration with the Museum. Computer-generated images provide exceptional scenographic productions for places with cultural and scientific mediation activities, without sacrificing the rigour and requirements demanded by a site like the Oceanographic Museum.
One of the goals of this creation is to build on the sense of wonder experienced by the visitors to make them aware of the threats that are hanging over the poles and the risks they represent for the whole planet. We want to create a link between Man and an ecosystem which is generally beyond his reach, to be spectacular while making sense, to dazzle while raising awareness. The device is also based on an educational mode that allows the Oceanographic Museum’s instructors to take the lead of each session and guide the visitors in a more scholarly experience.
A tool at the service of pedagogy
During holiday periods and on the occasion of welcoming school students, the educational service of the Oceanographic Museum offers dedicated animations. A tailor-made visit adapted to the young audience is made possible thanks to a specially designed «pedagogical mode». The animator can, on request, freeze certain scenes of the device to better observe a species or comment on its behavior. A multimedia library is also accessible to the animator who can project at any time an educational sheet, a film or an anatomical sheet to enrich the experience.
This “life simulator” is designed around a mix of matte painting, computer-generated imagery and real time 3D animations. Matte painting is a cinematographic process whereby one or more animated scenes are integrated in postproduction in a decor painted on a plane surface. A real-time computer-generated image is made live according to the actions of the visitors or the situations, unlike images made in post‑production.
The device used in the “IMMERSION” room juxtaposes these two techniques to enhance realism and speed of interaction.