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Australian National Maritime Museum

CHANGE OF DATE. New exhibition On Sharks & Humanity




Wednesday October 10, 2018




New exhibition On Sharks & Humanity

will now open on 11 December 2018


Acclaimed international art exhibition ‘On Sharks & Humanity’ is coming to Sydney this summer with a strong environmental message. 


This summer the Australian National Maritime Museum will welcome the internationally-acclaimed contemporary art exhibition On Sharks & Humanity, featuring works by more than 30 artists from China and around the world – all united by the need to protect sharks. This exhibition will now open on 11 December 2018 (instead of its previously advertised opening of 1 November 2018).


On Sharks & Humanity includes large-scale indoor and outdoor installations, photography, paintings, drawings, performance, poetry, video and sculptures by artists from China, Singapore, Germany, United States and Australia.

From late October some of the large outdoor artworks will begin to be installed around the museum’s waterfront in the lead up to the complete exhibition opening on 11 December.      

Conceived by Chinese arts organisation Parkview Arts Action and curated by the internationally renowned curator Huang Du, the environmentally-focused exhibition addresses the issues of shark protection, ocean conservation and the harmful demands of shark fin products through a variety of art forms.  

Co-chairs of Parkview Arts Action, Alex and Nancy Wong said that declining shark numbers, which posed a fundamental threat to the health of the world’s oceans, had become the catalyst for the exhibition.   

“This is a serious environmental issue that affects us all. Shark preservation is undoubtedly critical. Through the artists’ varied interpretations, On Sharks and Humanity can inform and confront audiences in ways that strike more directly into the human psyche than the abstract language of scientific debate.”

Australian National Maritime Museum Director and CEO, Kevin Sumption said the compelling artworks will be on display both in the museum galleries and outdoors along the museum’s waterfront.


“The uniqueness and, in some cases the sheer size and scale of the artworks, are sure to impress visitors. Importantly, the exhibition will provoke thought and discussion not only on global environmental issues, but also on issues Australia faces such as the ecological balance of marine life and our own endangered shark species.”

Mr Sumption said the Sydney exhibition will also include a new Australian dimension, incorporating works by Indigenous artists exploring sharks as totems and their role in informing cultural and ecological sustainability in water, land and species. Objects from the collection of prominent Australian shark experts Ron and Valerie Taylor will also be displayed.

The exhibition first opened at the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco in 2014, before touring to Moscow, Beijing, Singapore, and Hong Kong.

On Sharks & Humanity is supported by leading international non-profit organisation WildAid, whose mission is to end the illegal wildlife trade and reduce the demand for wildlife products, such as shark fin. WildAid works to measurably raise awareness and concern about the impact of the consumption of shark fin soup on shark populations and marine biodiversity.

On Sharks & Humanity opens at the Australian National Maritime Museum on 11 December 2018 and will remain on display until 2 June 2019. Entry is FREE.


Media images available on request.

All media inquiries: Shirani Aththas 02 9298 3642; 0418 448 690

Michele Camilleri 02 92983645: 0418219841

ABOUT Parkview Arts Action

Parkview Arts Action is an arts organisation that aims to harness the transformative power of art to raise awareness of critical environmental issues and inspire change among global communities. Dedicated to providing a platform for emerging artists to address pressing environmental issues, the organisation’s ambition is to support and encourage debate between arts institutions, businesses, scientific communities, advocacy organisations and the public around environmental sustainability. Set up by Parkview Group, the organisation is a natural extension of Parkview’s commitment to improve environmental sustainability across its commercial ventures and its support and patronage of the arts.


For more information, please visit



WildAid is an international non-government organisation whose mission is to end the illegal wildlife trade in this lifetime. WildAid views the illegal wildlife trade fundamentally as a matter of economics — of supply and demand. The organisation operates six different programs focusing on sharks, elephants, rhinos, manta rays, tigers and climate change.

For more information, please visit