Lets pay a visit to the Sensory Odyssey galleries at Art Science Museum. The galleries here are not quite of out the typical museum with displays and items behind glass. From the salt lakes of the savannah to the Arctic Circle, from the rainforest canopy to the depths of the earth and oceans. Become explorers as you embark on a larger-than-life journey through seven natural environments.
Unlike typical museums, these galleries were designed to engage the senses and curiosity of visitors, allowing us to become explorers of nature. The exhibition, organized by the ArtScience Museum and BASE Entertainment Asia. It was created by Sensory Odyssey Studio in collaboration with the French National Museum of Natural History. This 2023 Asian premiere marked the first stop on a global tour.
A full sensory experience
The experience began in a darkened gallery, immersing visitors in the Savannah Night. Here, the sounds and smells of the savannah at night surrounded us, creating an atmospheric and captivating environment. Also, the gallery featured surround sound speakers that brought the presence of baboons, lions, and zebras to life, as they gathered around a watering hole only to flee from a nearby bush fire. It was an impactful way to start the journey.
Continuing into the Tropical Rainforest installation, the next gallery transported us to the lush forest environment. Moreover, you could hear the sounds of the forest. Inhale the aroma of damp wood and vegetation, and experience the gentle rustling of leaves. The immersive quality of the exhibit made us feel as if you are truly standing within a tropical rainforest.
Hear bats echo location
Moving on to the On the Trail of Bats exhibit, we observed serotine bats gracefully hunting in the dark, using echolocation to find food. Through the use of surround sound and specially designed scents and sound effects, we were taken into the bat’s world, experiencing their use of echolocation as light waves.
The exhibit provided a unique perspective on how bats navigate their environment, with a map showcasing the intricate topography of their surroundings. The echoes of their clicking sounds and the scent of wood and bark added to the immersive experience.
Furthermore, the journey continued through themed passageways, leading to the Subterranean gallery. Here, you descend into the depths of the Going Underground display, encountering underground organisms and the interconnected network of tree roots.
Moreover, the subterranean world revealed a rich biodiversity, with the presence of hedgehogs, moles, earthworms, insects, and soil mites. Also, the soft rustling of the undergrowth and the enticing aroma of mushrooms and truffles immersed us in this hidden ecosystem.
Additionally, emerging from the underground, we entered the Prairie and Insects installation. Here, you can learn about the crucial role insects play in maintaining ecosystems. Close-up shots of insects, including butterflies, damselflies, grasshoppers, and ants, allowed us to observe their intricate details, such as their compound eyes.
Also, the sounds of the breeze and the interactions of these remarkable creatures further engaged our senses. The refreshing scents of grass and damp vegetation completed the multi-sensory experience.
Journey to the deep seas
Furthermore, the next gallery, Into the Deep Blue Sea, transports you to diverse landscapes such as glaciers, fjords, tundra plains, hills, and the vast ocean. Also, the exhibit aimed to raise awareness about climate change and its impact on nature, particularly through the melting glaciers and rising sea levels.
You have opportunity to spot Arctic foxes, Arctic terns, black-legged Kittiwakes, seals, and humpback whales, each adapted to survive in these harsh conditions. The howling wind and the crashing of icebergs, along with the fresh scents of the cold and icy surroundings, intensified the immersive experience.
Swim with the whales
Moreover, you can immerse yourselves in the To the End of the World gallery at the conclusion of the galleries. Here you dive into the deep blue sea of Mauritius alongside majestic sperm whales. Observing remoras, fish that attach themselves to the whales’ skin, added to the realism of the exhibit.
Also, the rhythmic pulsating clicks of communication among the sperm whales provided an auditory delight, while the invigorating scent of the sea completed the multi-sensory experience. The vast cinema-like screen showcased the whales swimming across the frozen poles, almost making it feel as if we were there.
Wrapping up, the Sensory Odyssey Art Science Museum exhibition concluded with a small gallery that showcased our local nature and honored nature heroes.
Also, this space features wall-mounted exhibits that teachers about local conservation efforts. Here you can interact with touch and feel boards as well as watch videos of their efforts.
All in all, that wraps up our explore of the Sensory Odyssey at Art Science Museum. The exhibition as a whole lasted about an hour to two hours, offering an embodied experience that unraveled the beauty of our planet’s biodiversity. It aimed to deepen our understanding of the natural world and inspire us to be better stewards of the Earth. Situated alongside the Future World galleries on the museum’s basement floor, the Sensory Odyssey is a sure-visit for those exploring the ArtScience Museum. Check it out from 27 May- 29 Oct 2023.