The start of the summer season this year coincides with the inauguration of the Montréal Insectarium's Pollinator Garden, and Espace pour la vie invites visitors to discover temporary art installations that are sure to pique their curiosity! From June 22 to July 3, miniature installations showcasing pollinating insects in a zany way, and a giant flower that puts humans on the scale of these insects will perk up this new space accessible free of charge. Moreover, while the plants quietly make themselves at home in the Pollinator Garden throughout the summer, scientific animators will accompany visitors in their discoveries. Discoveries that may well encourage people to do more for these invaluable pollinators! This immersive inauguration is the first of four events that will unfold during the coming year to celebrate and value insects in various ways: artistic, gourmet, scientific, etc.
"The ultimate goal of the Insectarium is to contribute to the advent of an entomophilic* society—a society where insects are known and valued by as many people as possible, as beings that are as fascinating as they are beneficial to the balance of ecosystems, fully respected as members of the great community of life," says Maxim Larrivée, director of the Montréal Insectarium. "The museum strives to be more than a destination, but also an actor in societal transformation in its own right, leading it to play different roles beyond its walls.”
* In the context of the new Insectarium, with its architecture and museology inspired by biophilia, we are giving the word entomophilia a whole new meaning, in the sense of love, respect and appreciation of insects.
"More than ever, we must protect biodiversity. Espace pour la vie wants to mobilize citizens, but also give them the tools they need and show them the role they can play to tackle this collective challenge. By offering a new way to connect with insects, we believe that the Insectarium's Pollinator Garden can contribute to changing the way we look at and behave towards insects, and inspire us to take action for their safeguard, and ultimately our own safeguard," said Julie Jodoin, interim director of Espace pour la vie.
BZZZZZZ! is a work created by Castor et Pollux, an urban landscape design agency, which evokes the stamens and pistils of flowers that insects land on to feed on nectar, thus carrying pollen from one plant to another. Inspired by the red cohosh (Actea rubra), a plant native to Quebec, the ephemeral work is made of natural materials (bamboo, cotton, wicker and wood). 1.8 to 3 meters tall, this giant installation enables humans to experience a change of scale and gets them a little closer to the perspective of pollinating insects.
Mini-Scenes from Daily Life
Quebec artist Alexis Johnston-Benamou has developed eight miniature sets featuring pollinating insects from Quebec transposed into the world of humans: a longhorned beetle sitting at a buffet, an Admiral butterfly getting a makeover, etc. Through the artist's zany imagination, the natural behaviours of insects (pollination, reproduction, etc.) instantly become more familiar to humans.
Take part in the Biodiversity Challenge
Espace pour la vie invites visitors to take advantage of their visit to the Pollinator Garden to participate in the Biodiversity Challenge. How? By taking one or more photos of nature that they can then share with other nature lovers.
The new Insectarium
The Insectarium is the first museum in North America where it will be possible to observe so many species of insects—living (some of them roaming freely) and naturalized—in a single location. It invites future visitors to enjoy extraordinary encounters with insects. The museum team offers an immersive and educational experience designed to transform the relationship that humans have with insects and to trigger in them an appreciation of insects, which is consciously referred to as "entomophilia"* at the Insectarium.
Design of the Pollinator Garden: atelier le balto (Berlin, Germany): Landscape architecture
To experience the new Insectarium
you must book a set time at the time of buying your tickets.
Tickets and Espace pour la vie Passport on sale here.
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About Espace pour la vie
Espace pour la vie is made up of five major attractions: the Biodôme, the Biosphère, the Insectarium, the Jardin botanique and the Planétarium Rio Tinto Alcan. These prestigious municipal institutions form Canada’s largest natural science museum complex. Together, they are launching a daring, creative urban movement, encouraging all of us to rethink the connection between humankind and nature and cultivate a new way of living.