NZ IceFest 2014


Auckland NZ IceFest Taster

Monday 25 August - These Rough NotesThese Rough Notes

Named for some of the last words written in Robert Falcon Scott’s diary, this unique experience is an evocation of Antarctica: of whiteness and cold and ceaseless winds. With texts by poet Bill Manhire set to music by composer Norman Meehan, sung by Hannah Griffin and interwoven with the images of photographer Anne Noble, this song cycle remembers those who live and those who have died on the ice. Event starts with a pre-concert talk by Bill Manhire.
7.30pm, $35, SkyCity Convention Centre.

Tuesday 26 August - Te Radar’s AntarcticanaTe Radar

Following his trip to Antarctica with Our Far South, Te Radar presents Antarcticana, an illustrated comedic lecture on all things Antarctic. The rigours of scurvy, scientific madness, odd flora and fauna and the even odder folk who have explored there.
7.30pm, $35, SkyCity Convention Centre. 


Thursday 28 August – SMART TALK: Antarctica at Auckland Museum

Photo courtesy of Auckland War Memorial MuseumSavour the wonder of Antarctic science after hours at Auckland Museum. Sit back and listen to a panel of international Antarctic scientists talk about the discoveries and daily life of working as a scientist at the bottom of the earth.

Speaker Panel:

Dr. Carlota Escutia, Universidad de Granada, Spain
Professor Martin Siegert, Co-Director, Grantham Institute, Imperial College London
Professor Chuck Kennicutt, Professor Emeritus in Oceanography, Texas A&M University
Professor Richard Bellerby, Research Scientist, Norwegian Institute for Water Research

Doors open 6pm, Smart Talk 7pm, Auckland Museum. 
Bookings essential, please see ticket prices below.

Photo courtesy of Auckland War Memorial Museum.

Still Life: Inside the Antarctic Huts of Scott and ShackletonJane Ussher

Step ‘inside’ the historic huts of Antarctic explorers Captain Robert Falcon Scott and Sir Ernest Shackleton to relive a time of extraordinary polar exploration. Experience a unique audiovisual work* created by New Zealand photographer Jane Ussher and the Antarctic Heritage Trust and become immersed in the landscape, isolation and lives left behind by these heroic early explorers. Encounter incredible Antarctic objects from Auckland Museum’s collections and find out what it was like to live, work and play in the earth’s southern-most continent. Then through the work of exhibition partner, Antarctic Heritage Trust, discover what’s happening to conserve this heritage on the ice today.

*Original immersive experience shown as part of NZ IceFest 2012, with support from the Christchurch City Council.

Still Life: Inside the Antarctic Huts of Scott and Shackleton
Special Exhibitions Hall, Auckland Museum
Open 27 August – 5 October, 10am – 5pm
Free with Museum entry 


Christchurch is the largest South Island city, both a Gateway to Antarctica and to the natural beauty of the South Island. Bordered by the Pacific Ocean, with the Southern Alps as a majestic backdrop, Christchurch allows for a huge array of experiences all within a few hours’ drive. Christchurch is an inexpensive and quick domestic flight from Auckland, with numerous connections available daily.

Christchurch is one of the world’s most unique destinations – see creativity and innovation popping up all over the city, following the 2010/11 earthquakes. With a huge emphasis on sustainability and environmental issues, Christchurch is embracing its new future. This is a chance to visit a city on the brink of reimagining itself. Discover vibrant transitional ideas like a mall made out of brightly coloured shipping containers and the famous “Cardboard Cathedral”. You’ll see lots of street art and urban designs popping up like The Pallet Pavilion and the gorgeous colours of Cathedral Square.

Friday 29 August - NZ IceFest Exhibitions’ Launch & Cocktail ReceptionExhibition Launch and Cocktail Reception

This event is now full.

NZ IceFest is a festival celebrating New Zealand’s connection to Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. We would like to formally invite attendees of the SCAR Open Science Conference and the COMNAP AGM to attend the opening evening of NZ IceFest’s premier exhibitions (see below for detail). Here, the official NZ IceFest programme will be unveiled along with The Great Debate topics, a highlight of the education programme. The evening will be a great opportunity to network and celebrate our international connections. 6.30pm–8.00pm, Canterbury Museum.  

Exhibitions opening:


Ice Lab: New Architecture and Science in Antarctica

Commissioned by the British Council, and hosted by Canterbury Museum, this exhibition explores the phenomenal architecture of India, Belgium, Republic of Korea and the United Kingdom's new Antarctic bases, and includes a futuristic snow and ice base.

Antarctic Time Travel

Antarctic Time Travel

Antarctic Time Travel is NZ IceFest's premier exhibition which we are developing in conjunction with New Zealand Antarctic Scientists. The exhibition will simulate an experience of journeying back 50million years, then travelling millions of years at a time back towards the future. Hurtling through time via a series of connected shipping containers, visitors will be immersed in dramatically changing surroundings as they experience millions of years worth of environmental change first hand. Along the way, they will come to grips with CO2 levels and gain an understanding of the human role in current CO2 levels. As they complete their Antarctic Time Travel experience, each individual will be empowered to make a difference - and encouraged to share a pledge to do so.

A Snapshot of AntarcticaPhoto courtesy of Antarctica New Zealand Pictorial Collection K150 09/10

Twenty-nine nations make up the consultative parties to the Antarctic Treaty. Each country has established a National Antarctic Program which is charged with operating an Antarctic facility and with delivering their countries scientific programme in Antarctica. This international outdoor exhibition promenades through the Christchurch streets to welcome COMNAP and SCAR to our Gateway City and celebrate the international endeavour of Antarctica.

Photo courtesy of Antarctica New Zealand Pictorial Collection K150 09/10.

Saturday 30 August - Celebrate: Antarctica, an International Endeavour

A personal insight into life at the Antarctic stations of Republic of Korea, Belgium, the United Kingdom and India (all featured in the Ice Lab Exhibition). International speakers from COMNAP who have lived and worked at these bases will talk about their time on the ice.

10.30am–12noon, Canterbury Museum 

Sunday 31 August - Canterbury Bus Tours

Transport is free and a local guide will accompany you to answer questions, however all activities are to be paid for and organised by yourself on arrival. Each bus will be filled on a first-come first-served basis. This is being coordinated by COMNAP.
RSVP to 

Option 1 – Hanmer Springs

Hanmer Springs village is a 90 minute drive to the north of Christchurch. It is famed for its naturally-heated thermal pools and spa set amongst a beautiful alpine backdrop. Try mountain biking or hiking in the forests, quad biking, jet boating, mini golf, visit the boutique shops and restaurants or just soak in the pools. 

Option 2 – Lyttelton

Lyttelton is located 20 minutes from central Christchurch City by bus. It is home to Christchurch's port and is a portal to Canterbury's historic Antarctic past. Lyttelton boasts wonderful views with quirky restaurants and cafés, harbour cruises and several arty shops and galleries. From Lyttelton, you can also take a short ferry ride to Quail Island, rich in Antarctic history, to spend a half-day exploring. 

Option 3 – Mt Hutt Ski Field

Board our bus to Mt Hutt ski field for a day on the slopes (weather-dependent) or simply to take in the spectacular view. For skiing, a day pass and ski/clothing hire can be purchased from Mt Hutt village.     

Essential Christchurch Information

It is an inexpensive and quick domestic flight from Auckland to Christchurch, with numerous connections available daily each way. Flight time: 1hr 20mins. or 

Christchurch, an Antarctic Gateway since the Heroic Era boasts a rich history from Quail Island where Scott and Shackleton quarantined their dogs, to the Magnetic Observatory opened in 1901 by Scott. View the self guided trail map and explore the history. 

At the Christchurch International Antarctic Attraction near the Christchurch Airport you can experience a snow and ice storm, hang out with Little Blue Penguins, ride the famous Hagglund and experience an awesome 4D Southern Ocean cruise. Great for taking those friends who you can’t pack in your suitcase on your way to the ice. 

Canterbury Museum has an extensive collection of artefacts from both the Heroic Era of Antarctic exploration and the 1957/8 Trans-Antarctic Expedition and will be hosting the Ice Lab, Antarctic Architecture Exhibition. 

Interested in Earthquakes? Check out Quake City, the Christchurch Earthquake Experience, informing, engaging and educating people about the Canterbury Earthquakes. 

Like it or not, the Canterbury earthquakes has changed the landscape forever, including toppling the famous Scott Statue, carved by his widow, Kathleen. Take the Discover Christchurch tour in an open top double-decker bus around the ever-evolving city. 

Check out many other amazing things to do Christchurch and Canterbury and places to stay.

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