Last year, design students from the Design Centre Enmore – TAFE were presented with this scenario and came up with a series of designs for future human species that have adapted to survive catastrophic climate change.
The startling results – maquettes and works on paper – will be displayed in a new exhibition, Dangerous Worlds, opening on Sunday 30 May, 2010, at the University of Sydney’s Macleay Museum.
According to Design Centre Enmore teacher Barry Dean, who instigated the project, students were asked to grapple with different imagined scenarios including: a three-fold increase in the earth’s gravity; a thick vaporous plume soaking the earth’s atmosphere; a superheated earth surface or one that has turned into mud-like quicksand.
“The works are the highest standard I’ve seen in six years of working on similar projects,” says Dean, whose students sketched animal exhibits in the Macleay Museum as part of their research. “The quality of the design and the imagination the students brought to the process was outstanding.”
Ala Paredes’s Homo Gravis has high bone and muscle density and short, thick limbs to adapt to a dramatic increase in the earth’s gravity while Tatiana Davidson’s Leptos Pedetes has wing-like membranes and powerful legs to cope with a decrease in gravity.
Rachel Dowling, the Macleay Museum’s curatorial assistant, says the students displayed a great deal of scientific principles in their work. “It’s very fitting that the creatures in Dangerous Worlds will be appearing at the Macleay Museum,” says Dowling. “Many of the properties of these new species are very similar to the animal species we have in our collection that have evolved through time.”
To celebrate the ingenuity of Dangerous Worlds, the Macleay will host a Creative Kids museum day from noon to 4pm on Sunday 18 July, 2010. At this special arts and crafts day, children will be able to make and take home their own future species. Entry is free and all are welcome.
Dangerous Worlds will be run until 12 September, 2010, at the Macleay Museum.
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