Guangdong Science Center, China
Guangdong Science Center launched the “Injecting Hope” exhibition in December 2022 in Guangzhou, the exhibition was sponsored by Wellcome Trust (UK) and co-curated by Guangdong Science Center, the Science Museum (UK), and the National Council of Science Museums (India).
With an area of 1000 sqm, the exhibition contains 23 exhibits in 6 exhibition zones, “A New Virus Coming”, “Designing Vaccines for Covid-19”, “Trialing Vaccines at a Record Speed”, “From Laboratories to Factories”, “Vaccinating a Nation”, and “Not Afraid of the Future”. The exhibition elaborates the scientific principles behind vaccine development, showcases the unprecedented story of rapid vaccine development, production, transportation, and distribution, as well as the tremendous efforts made by countless individuals from various fields around the world through a series of interactive exhibits, documentaries, and art installations, as well as how these specific and subtle “sweats” have collectively nurtured the seedling of hope that brings vitality to our lives. Over the next two years, it will tour four cities in China. Its sister exhibition, also with the theme of vaccines, hasalready toured seven cities across China. The two exhibitions have attracted 2.1469 million audience through online and offline until June 2023.
It reaches out to marginalized and diverse communities, especially those in remote, impoverished mountainous areas and areas without formal science venues, through new media, educational activities, and touring exhibitions. It makes full use of online and offline communication methods to attract public attention to public health issues and promote scientific literacy.
The exhibition evokes collective memories of the public through the cross-border integration of technology and art, and deeply focuses on individual life experiences. It gathers professionals in medicine, architectural design, visual and sound arts, and artistically reconstructs sculptures, ink paintings, gardens, images, and high-tech materials to form installations, creating an immersive cognitive space that inspires audience to reflect on the relationship between humans and nature from Eastern values, and to inquire about the essence of life.
The exhibition extensively adopts a first person perspective, documenting the character stories of vaccine research and development, production, and vaccination in various stages. It goes into the sites of factories, workshops, hospitals, and laboratories for filming, allowing scientists, doctors, volunteers, and vaccine transport drivers to face the camera. The real character stories and exhibits have greatly increased the literary value and social influence of this exhibition. The analysis of the seedlings of hope is also a review and summary of the fight against the epidemic.
This exhibition, jointly curated by China, the UK, and India, developed for more than two years and proves to be an innovative practice in cross-cultural exchange and international cooperation of exhibitions. The visual design, content narrative, and value structure of this exhibition not only have an international perspective, but also maximize the localization of China to achieve the value maximization of science popularization services for Chinese audience. The successful development and exhibition of this exhibition is a meaningful practice by domestic and foreign curators, scientists, and scholars who uphold the ideal of science without borders