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5 amazing things you can see – and hear – at World Museum’s new exhibition Bees: A Story of Survival

3 weeks ago

There’s always huge interest around National Museums Liverpool’s incredible exhibitions – but the latest one at World Museum is creating more of a buzz than most!

Bees: A Survival Story is a stunning and immersive adventure that explores the tales of these amazing creatures and their relationship with the natural world.

And it’s already been drawing in the crowds.

Ruth Haycock, Head of Museum Exhibitions at for National Museums Liverpool, said:

 “Visitor feedback has been amazing so far.

“We’ve had a lot of people saying it’s like nothing they’ve ever experienced before which is exactly what we hoped.”

In this unique partnership with award-winning artist and sculptor Wolfgang Buttress, Bees: A Story of Survival uses cutting edge technology to take you on this fascinating journey into their universe, from the awe-inspiring anatomy of a bee to the magic and wonder of their colonies, the role they play, and the threats they face.

Step inside the heart of the Swarm © Robin Clewley photography

One to keep you as busy as … it’s definitely worth a visit soon – and here’s five (there are more) amazing things you’ll see and hear:

1. Bee Cello

Don’t miss the Bee Cello! Honeybees nest in dark cavities, like those found in rocks or in tree stumps, but they’re also highly adaptable and sometimes make homes in unusual places. In the exhibition, there’s a cello with a honeybee nest inside it, the result of a collaboration between Wolfgang and Prof Martin Bencsik, a specialist in honeybee communication. 

2. Soundscapes

Throughout the exhibition an ethereal soundscape brings each room to life.  The audio’s been created in collaboration with members of Spiritualized under the production collective known as The Kármán Line and you can listen out for the ‘toots’ and ‘quacks’ of bees communicating with each other. 

A dad and daughter walk through the hive ©Mark Hadden photography
A dad and daughter walk through the hive ©Mark Hadden photography

3. Walk through a hive

Bees are some of nature’s greatest engineers and architects, and they can build their nests in almost any space. In Bees: A Story of Survival you can explore the life size structure of a hive and get up close with real time footage of a living colony, before learning how bees communicate via vibration using the bone conductor station.

4. See Swarm

The Swarm is a stunning installation representing the dramatic annual swarm of a honeybee colony.  Once a year, a honeybee colony swarms to prevent overcrowding in the hive and, using pheromones, the queen leads up to 30,000 bees to begin their search for a new nesting place. Because of her size, the queen can only fly short distances so the colony packs around her tightly wherever she lands and, while she rests, scout bees are sent out to look for a suitable new home.

When they return, they tell the swarm about potential sites using a ‘waggle dance’. 

5. Symphony

A responsive artwork and soundscape, it features sounds from more than 40,000 bees, and your movement is captured live in the space and expressed as ‘light’ shadows resembling stardust or pollen.

Find more information about Bees: A Story of Survival here.

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