Reimagining Reality is the winner of the ‘Sustainable Project of the Year’ category at the Museums + Heritage Awards. The victory was announced by Eilish McGuinness, CEO of The National Lottery Heritage Fund at a live awards ceremony in London on Wednesday, May 11.
On presenting the award, Eilish said: “It has never been more important for us all to think and act sustainably, for the planet, for heritage and for people. Discovering42’s project creatively reimagined everyday items – from old doors and washing machine motors – to inform and empower visitors about the problems of waste and how it contributes to climate change.”
Based in Bodmin in Cornwall, the interactive science exhibition features interactive artworks created from unwanted materials to spark curiosity in science and sustainability and empower visitors to respond to the problems of waste and how it contributes to climate change.
Created by Discovering42, a Cornwall-based creative events company, the exhibition features an immersive space that uses a large range of waste materials, such as old doors and bodyboards. Local artists were commissioned, who used materials that were available at a local scrap store, or bought locally second-hand.
It includes over 20 exhibits were produced, from a bike-powered record player utilising that uses an old washing machine motor, to a rainforest mirror room made from donated mirrors.
In their acceptance speech, a spokesperson from Discovering42 said: “We only opened in October, so we weren’t expecting to be here. We are just really impressed that we’ve had people that believe in us. It was a completely crazy idea. But we were lucky to get crowd funded and then Arts Council funding as well. It’s been an amazing journey of learning and experimentation, and we’re looking forward to going forward with that.”
The National Lottery Heritage Fund has sponsored the ‘Sustainable Project of the Year Award’ for the third year running, to recognise and celebrate an outstanding environmentally sustainable project or exhibition staged by a heritage or cultural organisation in the UK.
National Lottery players raise more than £30m every week for good causes in the UK. The National Lottery Heritage Fund requires every project it supports with National Lottery funding to strive to improve environmental sustainability and create positive benefits for nature.
Drew Bennellick, Head of Land and Nature Policy at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said, ‘We’re delighted to see the Sustainable Project of the Year Award awarded to Discovering42 CIC for the fantastic Reimagining Reality exhibition. The Heritage Fund was particularly impressed by how sustainability was the focal point of every stage of the project, from sourcing otherwise unwanted waste materials and using electric vehicles to transport them, to sparking the imagination of visitors to start conversations on climate issues and how we can individually and collectively all make a difference.
‘We at The National Lottery Heritage Fund are proud to sponsor this category of the Museums + Heritage Awards for the second year running, in recognition of the importance we place on environmental sustainability in all our project funding. We hope that by celebrating organisations across the UK who place sustainability at the heart of what they do, we can inspire others to take steps to tackle the climate and nature crises that we face’.
Anna Preedy, Director of the annual Museums + Heritage Awards, said, ‘This award is hugely important and I am delighted that, with the support of The National Lottery Heritage Fund, we can continue to champion sustainability in this way. The quality of entries was hugely impressive this year serving as timely reminder that environmental sustainability must always be embedded in everything that we do’.
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