Watching the World Change through Victoria’s Museums Parks and Gardens

22 May 2019

This month, the United Nations announced that nature is declining globally at rates unprecedented in human history, driven in part by climate change.

Evidence of this is crystal clear in Victoria, with a new online story called Collections and Climate Change showing how the Victorian Government has been taking steps to understand climate change impacts through Victoria’s cultural and scientific treasures.

The documentary film and gallery, now live on the Victorian Government Culture Victoria portal, explores how the information gathered and stored by Museums Victoria, Parks Victoria and the Royal Botanic Gardens gives insight into local climate related shifts in human, plant and animal life.

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Collections and Climate Change


Commissioned by: Creative Victoria

Produced: 2018

Length: 9.01 minutes

Dr Mark Norman, Chief Conservation Scientist, Parks Victoria. Photographer Jary Nemo. Courtesy of Wind & Sky Productions.

Beware Reef Marine Sanctuary. Photographer John Ariens. Courtesy of Friends of Beware Reef Marine Sanctuary.

Kate Phillips, Senior Curator, Science Exhibitions, Museums Victoria. Photographer Jary Nemo. Courtesy of Wind & Sky Productions.

Red Kangaroo, Murray Sunset National Park. Photographer Mark Norman. Courtesy of Parks Victoria.

Professor David Cantrill, Executive Director Science, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria. Photographer Jary Nemo. Courtesy of Wind & Sky Productions.

Ranunculus victoriensis Victorian Buttercup, National Herbarium of Victoria, Royal Botanic Gardens of Victoria.

Underwater reef, Yap. Photograph by John Stevenson. Source: Flickr.

The Film

In Victoria climate change is already impacting our oceans and our landscapes and our cultural, social and political life.

The Collections and Climate Change Documentary Film explores how Victoria’s scientific and cultural collections, both the static material kept in museums and the living flora and fauna of our parks and marine reserves, helps us understand the change that is occurring and what sort of actions we need to take in the future.

The nine minute documentary features interviews with Mark Norman, Chief Conservation Scientist at Parks Victoria, Kate Phillips, Senior Curator Science Exhibitions at Museums Victoria, Professor David Cantrill, Executive Director Science at Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria and Sione Napi Francis, Lead Curator Te Pasifika Gallery Redevelopment at Museums Victoria.

The film is part of a broader digital exhibition Collections and Climate Change.

The film can be viewed either

Via the Culture Victoria Collections and Climate Change exhibition at:

Or on YouTube at:

The Story

The world is changing.

Change is a natural part of the Earth’s cycle and of the things that live on it, but what we are seeing now is both like and unlike the shifts we have seen before.

Anthropogenic change, meaning change created by humans, is having an impact on a global scale. In particular, human activity has altered the composition of the Earth’s atmosphere, causing the world’s climate to change.

Already in the state of Victoria we are seeing evidence of this change around us. In the natural world, coastal waters are warming and bringing tropical marine species to our bays. Desert animals are migrating to Victoria. Alpine winters are changing, potentially putting plants and animals at risk of starvation and pushing species closer to the margins. In the world of humans, island and coastal dwellers deal with the tangible and intangible impacts of loss as sea levels rise, bush dwellers live with an increased risk of life-threatening fires, farmers cope with the new normal of longer droughts, and we all face extreme weather events and the impacts of social and economic change.

Digital Exhibition

Collections and Climate Change is an online digital exhibition on Creative Victoria’s Culture Victoria portal, which is a free community resource. The exhibition explores how Victoria’s scientific and cultural collections help us understand climate change. It focuses on three Victorian institutions – Museums Victoria, the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria and Parks Victoria. It looks at how the information gathered and maintained by a dedicated community of researchers, curators, scientists, specialists and volunteers can help us understand and prepare for a hotter, drier, more inundated world.

The exhibition is made up of a short documentary film and twenty-one examples highlighting how botanical records, geological and biological specimens and living flora and fauna provide a crucial resource for scientists striving to map continuity, variability and change in the natural world. And it helps us rethink the significance of some of Victoria’s cultural collections in the face of a changing climate.

Commissioned by Creative Victoria the project was produced by Wind & Sky Productions in partnership with Museums Victoria, Parks Victoria and the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria.

The digital exhibition is free to watch, show and share at:

Awards and Nominations

Finalist, Best Science Movie, 2020 Vienna Science Film Festival


Creative Producers:
Lucinda Horrocks and Jary Nemo
Commissioning Editors on behalf of Creative Victoria:
Dimity Mapstone and Georgia Melville
Production Company:
Wind & Sky Productions
Project Manager:
Jary Nemo
Digital Gallery Curator:
Lucinda Horrocks
Documentary Film Director:
Jary Nemo
Mark Norman, Chief Conservation Scientist, Parks Victoria; Kate Phillips, Senior Curator Science Exhibitions, Museums Victoria; Professor David Cantrill, Executive Director Science, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria; Sione Napi Francis, Lead Curator Te Pasifika Gallery Redevelopment, Museums Victoria.
Documentary film additional appearances by:
Friends of Beware Reef Volunteers, John Ariens, National Herbarium of Victoria Volunteers, Mary Ward, Sandra Whitty, Vicky Jaeger, Museums Victoria Staff, Mark Nikolic, Mohamed Nishath Mohamed Nizar and Chris Rowley.
Story Contributors:
Di Bray, Rebecca Carland, Liza Dale-Hallett, Katie Date, Catherine Forge, Sione Napi Francis, Casey Gibson, Megan Hirst, Lucinda Horrocks, Jane Melville, Stuart Mills, Andrew Nixon, Stephen Poropat, Dominique Potvin, Kate Phillips, Thomas Rich, Mark Rodrigue, Kevin Rowe, Rolf Schmidt, Stella Shipway, Neville Walsh, Parks Victoria, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria, Museums Victoria.
Moving images in documentary film courtesy of:
John Ariens, Friends of Beware Reef Marine Sanctuary, Mike Irvine, Don Love, NASA, Parks Victoria, VideoBlocks
Moving images in Digital Gallery by:
Julian Finn, Museums Victoria and Wind & Sky Productions.
Photographs and artwork in documentary film courtesy of:
CSIRO Science Image, Chris Hayward, Megan Hirst, Greg McCarthy, Museums Victoria, Mark Norman, Parks Victoria, David Paul, Mark Rodrigue, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria, Steven Wright, Wikimedia Commons.
Photographs and artwork in Digital Gallery by:
John Augier, Australian Network for Plant Conservation, Arthur Bartholomew, Tim Bawden, Tony Bowden, John Broomfield, European Space Agency, Catherine Forge, Marc Freestone, Lucinda Gibson, Global Environment Facility, Bob Hare, D. Harley, Chris Hayward, Megan Hirst, Lucinda Horrocks, Matt Kieffer, Anna Lee, Kaveman743, Andre Messina, Stuart Mills, Steven Moreton, Paul Morris, Museums Victoria, Mark Norman, David Paul, Thomas Parkes, Parks Victoria, Christian Pearson, Mark Rodrigue, Karen Rowe, Kevin Rowe, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria, Stella Shipway, David Staples, Rodney Start, John Stevenson, Jonathon Stevenson, Peter Trusler, Neville Walsh, Heath Warwick
Story Advisors:
Liza Dale-Hallett, Pina Milne, Andrew Nixon, Kate Phillips, Mark Rodrigue and Ken Walker.
Camera, Sound, Editing and Post Production by:
Jary Nemo
Story Research, Interviews and Additional Digital Gallery Content Written by:
Lucinda Horrocks
Proofing by:
Mrs Wordsworth-Bottling
Produced in collaboration with:
Museums Victoria, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria and Parks Victoria
With Thanks to:
Erin Batty, Di Bray, John Broomfield, Peter Dahlhaus, Julian Finn, Heather Horrocks, Don Love and the Friends of Beware Reef, Nuni Markito-Russen, the National Herbarium of Victoria, Nicole O’Brien, Anna Quinn, Nathan Robinson, Sally Stewart, Joanna Sumner, Danielle Walker, Genefor Walker-Smith, Maraika van Wessem, Peter Wilson, and Rob Zugaro.
This project was created with the support of the Victorian Government through the Victorian Cultural Network Program and Creative Victoria. Project production and development took place on the lands of the Wadawurrung, Boon Wurrung and Wurundjeri peoples. We acknowledge these Traditional Owners as custodians of country and we pay our respects to Elders past, present and future.
Film copyright with:
Wind & Sky Productions ©2018
Digital Gallery copyright with
Individual creators