Family exhibition, Tales of Teredo Navalis, is to be extended to May half-term, thanks to generous funding from the Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour.
The exhibition shows how Marc Brunel was inspired by the Teredo Navalis, the humble shipworm, when designing the Tunnelling Shield that made the Thames Tunnel possible.
The exhibition opened 1 April as part of the Art Fund’s Wild Escapes programme, and has been extended into May half-term, thanks to funding from the Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour.
The Thames Tunnel was the first world’s shield driven tunnel. The exhibition shows how Marc Brunel was inspired by nature’s ingenuity to create the groundbreaking tunnelling shield which made the Thames Tunnel possible. Families can discover how ship worms, which are in fact clams rather than worms, use their shells on top of their heads to bore tunnels through timbers of ships. Marc Brunel first saw the impact of ship worms on timbers when he was working at the Royal navy Dockyards in Portsmouth. Families will be able to explore how ship worms bore tunnels through timbers of ships, getting up close to real specimens. They will also have the opportunity to dig their own tunnels.
Charlotte Evans, ASAB, said, “The ASAB Education Committee are super excited to be able to fund the extension of this fantastic exhibition. Animal behavior is an innately fascinating and engaging subject, which helps to explain the world around us and our place in it. Everyone can identify and draw comparisons between their own behaviours and those of other animals. We want to encourage young people to notice the animal behaviours they see around them, and perhaps reflect upon how these behaviours have a greater meaning for themselves: a bit like Marc Brunel!”
The exhibition has been supported by a Wild Escapes Grant. The scheme is delivered by Museum Development England in partnership with Art Fund. The Wild Escape is made possible by lead support from Arts Council England’s National Lottery Project Grants, with additional support from Art Fund.
The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour (ASAB) promotes and supports the study of animal behaviour. They organise conferences, fund research, and encourage teaching of animal behaviour in schools.
ASAB has a long-standing concern for the treatment of animals in research and teaching. ASAB produces ethical guidelines for animal behaviour research, they believe that it is their responsibility to minimise any possible suffering and to support the conservation of the animals they study.
About the Wild Escape
Taking place from January to July 2023, The Wild Escape invites children to find a favourite animal in their local museum and create an artwork imagining its journey to a natural habitat. The pictures and stories children create will be brought together in a collective work of art that imagines a better future for the wildlife on our doorstep, launched online and in museums on Earth Day 2023.
The Wild Escape is made possible with support from Arts Council England’s National Lottery Project Grants, with additional support from Bloomberg Philanthropies, Kusuma Trust, Foyle Foundation and a group of generous individuals and trusts.