29 May, 2018 News stories

Leading climate scientist and BAS oceanographer Dr Emily Shuckburgh worked with award-winning author and illustrator Chris Haughton to create the short film Message from Antarctica. This is part of the Trans.MISSION series of short films unveiled at this year’s Hay Festival.

Message from Antarctica uses engaging illustrations to take a look at polar science, focussing on climate science in Antarctica. Chris and Emily discussed the project at the Hay Festival on Saturday 26th May.

Emily said:

“The findings of climate science affect all of us: they warn of the perilous state in which we have placed the planet and of the urgency with which we need to respond if we are to limit the risks to society of future climate change.

It has been great working with Chris to find new ways of engaging people in our scientific discoveries on this important topic. I am certain that the combination of Chris’ wonderful creative talents with the profound and majestic insights Antarctica offers will prove to be captivating.”

The Trans.MISSION series is a collaboration between Hay Festival and the UK Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) to communicate cutting-edge science to new audiences.

The project paired prominent scientists with renowned artists to produce a piece of work, As well as Message from Antarctica, it included Clean Air by Aardman Animation Studios director Dan Binns and atmospheric chemist Professor Ally Lewis (voiced by Marcus Brigstocke), and the Weather Watching series by poet Nicola Davies and climate scientist Ed Hawkins.

Alison Robinson, NERC Director of Corporate Affairs, said:

“Understanding our changing planet is fundamental to all our futures, and art has the power to start conversations around how our environment – and environmental science – affects our lives.

“These collaborations bring together high-profile illustrators and authors with NERC’s leading researchers in creating striking short animations, using powerful words and images, to show why environmental science matters to all our lives.  It’s great to see these works bring out the importance of our science in such an engaging way – from the rapid changes in the Antarctic or the quality of the air we breathe here at home in the UK.

View the other short films here.