Hunt Museum inspire climate action with new exhibition

Pictured at the Hunt Museum's latest interactive exhibition "Nights Candles are Burnt Out: Climate, Culture, Change &; Community were from L to R, Scoil Ide, Corbally 5th Class pupils, Jayden Lowe, Elena Bucke and Padraig Lynch. Picture: Alan Place

NOW open at the Hunt Museum is Night’s Candles are Burnt Out: Climate, Culture, Change & Community, the museum’s latest interactive and experiential exhibition running until February 29, 2024.

‘Night’s Candles are Burnt Out’ invites visitors to explore how Ireland can embrace its pioneering history and lead the way in addressing the Climate Challenge, by harnessing the immense renewable energy potential of the Shannon Estuary, particularly through wind and water.

Through art, technology, and storytelling, Night’s Candles are Burnt Out offers local communities and the public at large an opportunity to engage with the positive possibilities of change, fostering hope and motivating individuals to consider how they can contribute to sustainable solutions.

As we anticipate the supply of Atlantic Offshore Wind Energy through the Shannon Estuary by 2030, the exhibition emphasises the need for communities to recognise the intrinsic value of positive change and support the necessary interim disruptions, such as road construction and services which will feel counter intuitive, much like the creation of Ardnacrusha and the Shannon Hydro-Electric Scheme did in the 1920’s. 

Jill Cousins, Director, The Hunt Museum, commented, “The Hunt Museum’s role in Climate Action is to serve as a creative and educational hub and a conduit to meaningful change. 

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“We’re bringing our community and partners together to curate an interactive exhibition that encourages conversation and action on the Climate Crisis. Through the transformative power of art and culture, we can ignite behavioural change by establishing emotional connections that will hopefully lead to a better understanding of the science and technology that can move us from our reliance on non-renewable energy to a sustainable future. 

“Our goal is to encourage buy-in for future possibilities while encouraging more environmentally friendly lifestyles and practices in the present.” 

As a creative immersive experience, visitors are brought through a series of installations starting with a flywheel and wind turbine in the courtyard. 

Visitors are then brought on a journey from 100 years ago to now, looking at Pre-electrification Ireland, the Electrical Revolution, Consumerism and The Tipping Point. 

This is followed by a phase of reflection. An art installation by Niamh Schmidtke helps us reflect on what it takes to create green energy and asks what is the impact of sustainable energy? 

The final phase of the experience focuses on the technology-led solutions at our disposal and the people power solutions. 

This exhibition’s overarching message is one of optimism, emphasising the importance of translating technological advancements into meaningful, real-world progress.