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09.10.2018 - 08.09.2019

Special exhibition with large scale images from J Henry Fair

The New York-based artist J Henry Fair takes a bird‘s-eye view of occulted industrial areas, toxic waste deposits and coal mining and documents the sometimes catastrophic effects of human activity on nature through large-format, aesthetic and highly sophisticated images.

Together with scientists from the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission the exhibition identifies the challenges behind the images and illustrates how science and politics work together to find solutions.

The exhibition shows how complex some of those problems are, that sometimes there are no quick solutions, and takes a stand against „alternative facts“. ARTEFACTS is intended to go beyond raising awareness by stimulating reflection as well as action.

How do we want to deal with the future of our one and only planet? What are the individual and collective contributions we can all make to help?

With its unique presentation ARTEFACTS initiates a dialogue about the environment and invites visitors to get into conversation: With each other and with scientists and experts.

J Henry Fair

„Art that is beautiful but not meaningful is decoration. Art that is meaningful without beauty is pedantic.” J Henry Fair

J Henry Fair is an artist and scientist, esthete and activist. He lives in New York. His works, which have been featured in magazines like National Geographic and Art Magazine, unite beauty and expressiveness and enable a new, different look at the human impact on nature.

Henry Fair explores places where we left our marks. From a bird's eye perspective, he uses poetry and aesthetics to present toxic waste deposits, coal mining areas or highly poisonous mud pools. The initial enthusiasm for the composition and style of the images is quickly replaced by dismay of what is behind the image. That contradiction of form and content constitutes the great attraction of his work.

The work of Henry Fairs directs our awareness to questions about the environment, politics and society and invites the audience to immerse, question and reflect on their own actions.

With ARTEFACTS, the Museum für Naturkunde is showing twenty of the artist's works in large scale. Videos provide an insight into Fair’s creative process and let him talk about his motivation.


The Joint Research Centre (JRC) is the science and knowledge service of the European Commission. The JRC supports the EU with independent scientific evidence and works with them on policy solutions that are effective, efficient, fair and sustainable.

About 2,000 scientists at six locations in Europe work to ensure that policy-makers have the best available evidence when taking important decisions that have an impact on the daily lives of European citizens.

In the exhibition we meet ten scientists who tell us what they are working on, what motivates them and what personal contribution they make to make the world a little bit better.

Meet an Expert

During the course of ARTEFAKTE there will regularly be the opportunity to talk live with scientists and experts in the exhibition.

The next dates are:

28. August, 3:30 pm
Ernährung und Klimaschutz: vom Teller zur Temperatur“ with Isabelle Weindl, scientist at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK)

Digital Exhibition

Can’t make it to the Museum für Naturkunde in Berlin? No problem: The new special exhibition ARTEFACTS is also available digitally.

You can download the desktop version (10 GB) here.

ARTEFACTS is an exhibition of the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin, supported by the Aktionsplan Leibniz Research Museums.
The exhibition was created in cooperation with J Henry Fair and the Joint Research Centre (JRC) of the European Commission.