HomeSeason 2 Recordings

Season 2 Recordings

Session 1: Art

The Substitute

Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg

The recent recipient of the S+T+ARTS Grand Prize 2023 for Artistic Exploration, Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg is a multidisciplinary artist examining our fraught relationships with nature and technology. Through subjects as diverse as artificial intelligence, synthetic biology, conservation, and evolution, she explores the human impulse to “better” the world. Her work is in collections including the Art Institute of Chicago, the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, and ZKM Karlsruhe. In 2022 she launched Pollinator Pathmaker, a series of living artworks for pollinators, planted and cared for by humans with the long-term desire to create the world’s largest climate-positive artwork. In April 2023, she opened her first U.S. solo exhibition, Machine Auguries:Toledo at Toledo Museum of Art.

Landscapes, Perspectives and Art

Donal Maguire, Keeper of Art and Industry, National Museum of Ireland

Donal Maguire began his career as an artist having studied painting and art history at the National College of Art and Design before completing his MPhil in art history at Trinity College and moving towards curation. He was Curator of the National Gallery of Ireland’s ESB Centre for the Study of Irish Art from 2009-23. His own research interests are in modern and contemporary Irish art; art and ecology; the Irish diaspora; and collection management. He has published and lectured widely at a national and European level and is a contributor to the RIA Art and Architecture of Ireland. He has curated numerous exhibitions including: ‘Jack B. Yeats: Painting & Memory’ (2021); ‘Shaping Ireland: Landscapes in Irish Art’ (2020); ‘Markievicz: Portraits and Propaganda’ (2018); ‘Aftermath: The War Landscapes of William Orpen’ (2017); ‘Jack B. Yeats, The Sketchbooks’ (2013). He has a strong interest in the role of research in art practice and he has commissioned new artworks by artists including Sarah Pierce, Garrett Phelan and Amanda Coogan.

Exhibiting oceans in natural history museums: reflections on curatorial and artistic practices

Bergit Arends, Courtauld Institute

Bergit Arends a curator of contemporary art and currently a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow at the Courtauld Institute of Art. She has curated many contemporary art projects for the natural history museums in London (2005–2013), such as Galápagos (2012–2013) and Tania Kovats TREE (2009), and in Berlin, including Elizabeth Price BERLINWAL (2018). She publishes widely, recently on critical engagements with the natural sciences, ‘Unequal Earth’ in (NaturKultur 2021), The Botanical City (2020), Botanical Drift (2018), and on decolonising natural history museums (Art in Science Museums 2019). Bergit currently works on montage and the Anthropocene.

Archives of Time

Siobhán McDonald

Siobhán McDonald’s practice draws attention to contemporary topics dealing with air, breath and atmospheric phenomena, weaving scientific knowledge into her art in a poetic and thoughtful manner. Siobhán works with natural materials, withdrawing them from their cycles of generation, growth and decay. This process gives form to a range of projects which consider our place on Earth in the context of geological time. Her work with glaciers and other natural phenomena deploys a unique artistic language that gives form to intangible and richly varied processes including painting, drawing, film and sound.

Siobhán is working with European Cultural Institutions such as BOZAR: Centre for Fine Arts, Brussels and Gluon: Platform for Art, Science and Technology on a new project about environmental change. She is also Artist in Residence at the School of Natural Sciences, Trinity College Dublin (2023-2026.) Recent awards include The Project Award, 2023; The Ocean Memory Award, USA (2022); Arts Council Ireland Project Award 2022; EU Commission Alumni (IT) award 2021; Culture Ireland Award 2022; Arts Council’s Visual Arts Bursary 2020; Creative Ireland Award 2020 and Climate Whirl Arts Programme Helsinki 2021. Recent shows include The Model 2023; BOZAR, Brussels, 2020; Deutsches Hygiene-Museum DHMD, 2020; Volta, Basel 2019; Limerick City Art Gallery, 2019; Deutsches Hygiene-Museum DHMD, 2019; The National Trust-Fox Talbot Museum, UK, 2018; Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris, 2018 among others. Her work is represented in many collections, both public and private such as The Arts Council / An Chomhairle Ealaíon, Allied Irish Banks, Bank of Ireland, The Ulster Museum and Trinity College Dublin.

Session 2: Oceans

Blue Museums as Arenas of Lifelong Learning for Green Transitions

Marie-Theres Fojuth, Universitet I Stavanger

Marie-Theres Fojuth is a modern historian of environment, technology and knowledge with a doctoral thesis from Humboldt University Berlin. She works as an Associate Professor of History at the University of Stavanger, Norway, and is part of The Greenhouse Center for Environmental Humanities. Fojuth was formerly Head of Cultural History at Museum Stavanger and Curator at Stavanger Maritime Museum. Her current research agenda focuses on public history, museum studies and Education for Sustainable Development (ESD).

The ocean and climate change: representations in museums and aquaria

Susanna Lidström, KTH Royal Institute of Technology and Anna Åberg, Chalmers University of Technology

Susanna Lidström is a researcher in environmental history and literature at KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden, and a visiting scholar at Scripps Institution of Oceanography in California. Her research studies environmental narratives and their changes over time, with a focus on marine environments.

Anna Åberg is a senior researcher and historian of technology at Chalmers University of Technology. Her research focuses on energy- and resource history, from the perspectives of science diplomacy, transnational history and narratives of science and technology in popular culture.

Harbour Ecologies – Multidisciplinary Collaboration in Blue/Green Museums 

Dominik Huenniger, German Port Museum Hamburg

Dominik Huenniger is the the curator for innovation research at the German Port Museum Hamburg. He is combining Science and Technology Studies, Environmental History, Labour History, Performative History of Science and Material Culture Studies in planning a new museum building as well new exhibition content. He obtained a PhD from the University of Goettingen with a thesis on the cultural history of epizootics in Mid-18th century Northern Europe. (Academic) heritage, the history and future of collections and the material aspects of knowledge formation are also key concerns in his position as an affiliate researcher at The Hunterian, University of Glasgow and the Leibniz Institute for the Analysis of Biodiversity Change/Museum for Nature Hamburg.

Session 3: Deep Time

Writing the Story of Extinction at London’s Natural History Museum in the Early Twentieth Century

Richard Fallon, Natural History Museum, London

Richard Fallon is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Natural History Museum and a Postdoctoral KE Fellow at the University of Nottingham. His book Reimagining Dinosaurs in Late Victorian and Edwardian Literature was published by Cambridge University Press in 2021. 

Museum Ethnography of Deep Time: Friction & Compromise in Curating Smithsonian’s Fossil Exhibitions

Diana Marsh, University of Maryland

Dr. Diana E. Marsh is an Assistant Professor of Archives and Digital Curation at the University of Maryland’s College of Information Studies (iSchool). She studies how heritage institutions share knowledge with the public and communities. Her current research focuses on improving discovery and access to colonially-held archives for Native American and Indigenous communities. Her recent work has appeared in The American ArchivistArchival ScienceThe Public Historian, and Museum Anthropology. Her book, From Extinct Monsters to Deep Time: Conflict, Compromise, and the Making of Smithsonian’s Fossil Halls was published in 2019 with Berghahn Books, and was released in paperback in 2022.

Housing the Iguanodons in Belgium’s Natural History Museum: a case study in popularising deep time

Shana van Hauwermeiren, Workshop Intangible Heritage

Shana Van Hauwermeiren researched the discovery of the Iguanodons of Bernissart and their sociological impact on Belgian society at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century. Since 2019, she works towards safeguarding intangible heritage at Workshop intangible heritage (BE), and is responsible for projects, support and research of participation in relation to intangible heritage communities.

Session 4: Cryptids

Mermaids in Museums

Paolo Viscard, National Museum of Ireland Natural History

Paolo Viscardi is the Keeper of Natural History at the National Museum of Ireland (NMI). He previously worked in curatorial roles at the NMI, the Grant Museum of Zoology, and Horniman Museum and Gardens. At the Horniman he had the opportunity to use his knowledge of comparative anatomy to research mermaids held in UK collections, in order to identify the methods used in their construction.

Museum Cryptids: hoaxes, jokes, and marketing ploys

Jordan Kistler, University of Strathclyde

Jordan Kistler is a Lecturer in English Literature at the University of Strathclyde. She researches the cultural history of museums and the intersections between museums, literature, and fantasy. 

Conveying ‘Sea Monster Science’ in a Museum Setting

Darren Naish, Tetrapod Zoology

Darren Naish is an author and palaeozoologist who works on dinosaurs, ancient sea reptiles and the flying pterosaurs. He received his PhD in palaeontology from the University of Portsmouth in 2006. He has published numerous books, most recently Ancient Sea Reptiles (Natural History Museum, London/Smithsonian Books) and Mesozoic Art (with Steve White, published by Bloomsbury), and he blogs at Tetrapod Zoology ( where he writes about all manner of zoological topics. He also works for the BBC Natural History Unit and is chief scientific consultant for the Apple TV+ series Prehistoric Planet.