Recently opened at the Barbican, Our Time on Earth – a major exhibition celebrating the power of global creativity to transform the conversation around the climate emergency.
Calling for a mindset shift through the exploration of art, design and technology, the exhibition invites people to imagine a world in which both people and the planet can flourish. Fundamental to the experience of the exhibition, the lighting by Speirs Major is designed to support open-minded exploration and full engagement with the artworks while driving innovation in sustainable ways of working for touring exhibitions
Through art, design, science, music and philosophy, the exhibition presents a range of radical visions for the future of all species.
A journey through immersive, interactive installations and digital works, the exhibition invites visitors to experience a range of perspectives of our shared planet, exploring Earth as a community to which we all belong – humans as just one species among millions.
Aiming to reignite respect for our essential and complex biosphere and inspire awe and wonder for our beautiful planet, the exhibition explores different ways of existing on Earth and finding ways to reconnect with them, while also looking at the role technology has to play in deepening our understanding and connection to the natural world. Our Time on Earth encourages visitors to take an active role and leave feeling empowered to make positive change.
Our Time on Earth opens a conversation to examine this viewpoint from multiple global perspectives, look at the positive possibilities of an alternative future, and embrace the wonder of the natural world.
Our Time on Earth presents 18 works, including 12 new commissions, from 12 countries around the world to create a series of innovative new collaborations. Bringing together academics, architects, artists, activists, designers, ecologists, engineers, environmental campaigners, researchers, scientists, technologists and writers, the exhibition highlights the need to work in collaboration across disciplines to tackle climate change together.
Luke Kemp, Barbican International Enterprises, said: ‘It is an essential moment for the Barbican to contribute to this urgent issue and showcase how unique collaborations across a range of disciplines
can create a vision of hope and possibility, that will aim to shift perspectives and immerse visitors in the wonder of our planet. Culture has a key role to play in accelerating the response to the climate emergency. It provides a platform to challenge the way we engage our communities to respond.’ Kate Franklin and Caroline Till, guest curators said: ‘There is more scientific evidence than ever demonstrating the amplitude of the climate emergency. And the science is essential – there’s no doubt about that. But art, design and culture have the power to move us, and creative propositions of the sort we have gathered within Our Time on Earth aim to seduce the visitor into another way of seeing –another way of being. They invite us to listen, to feel, to really see, what it could be like to live and thrive in an alternative and positive future’.
Stéphan La Roche, CEO of Musée de la civilisation said: ‘This exhibition calls on the power of reflection and imagination of contemporary artists as well as visitors. The Musée de la civilisation, with our vision of ‘a museum for a better world’ and mission as a museum of society cannot wait to partner with the
Barbican Centre to present this one-of-a-kind exhibition in a multidisciplinary approach enveloping a highly relevant subject, having the power to change perceptions and push to action’.
Our Time on Earth gives an opportunity to pilot new ways of sustainable working at the Barbican.
Initiated and led by Guest Curators Caroline Till and Kate Franklin with support from Julie’s Bicycle, we have developed a set of guidelines for sustainable touring exhibitions and asked all our partners and collaborators to sign up to our sustainability commitment to ensure all involved in delivery of the exhibition are working to the highest possible environmental standards. We are developing this practice in collaboration with other departments in the Barbican Centre as part of our five-year sustainability strategy.
Our Time on Earth is running from 5/5/2022 until 29/8/2022 at The Barbican Centre, London.