Posts Tagged 'Exhibits'

New museum update: Two-fer

by Terry Burton, Digital Media Coordinator

We’ve got a double dip for you on this month’s installment of “New Museum Update.” First, we recently launched a whole batch of new website pages that cover some of the highlights of the new museum, including the digital dome, new classroom spaces, and the expanded Archive, among others. Check out these pages to see building schematics, exhibit designs, and architect’s renderings. These are just the beginning — we’ll have more and more to show you as we continue to create this amazing new museum.

To see the new pages, start with “About the New Museum” and then explore the buttons you’ll find on the right. If you have any comments or questions, please let us know!

Second, you may have seen on our Facebook or Flickr pages photos from our now-official construction site. On Monday June 7th the construction fence went up around the site, and since then the construction trailer has been moved in and hooked up with phones lines and electricity. Just between you and me, that construction trailer is bigger than my house! It’s niiiiice. Once everything is in place, they’ll start working on prepping the site for actual construction to begin — soon! See more photos on Flickr.

Construction trailer at the new museum site, June 10, 2010

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Color my world

by Terry Burton, Digital Media Coordinator

We’ve got a LOT of behind-the-scenes work going on right now, as we prepare for Discovery Science Center’s move into the Fort Collins Museum building. DSC’s last day in their current location is this Saturday, May 30th (so get over there, like, NOW if you want to have one last look!). Three weeks ago we dismantled the “Poor of Me, Good of Dog” exhibit in the gallery and Exhibit Designer Cory Gundlach began transforming that space into what will become the home of many of DSC’s most-loved hands-on interactive science exhibits. It’s a lot of work, to say the least, and very exciting to see everything taking shape.

The walls are up and prepped, and this week we’re all pitching in to prime and paint. Yes, Directors, Curators, and everything, turned loose with rollers, ladders, and drop cloths. It’s mayhem, but so far the paint is mostly going on the walls, and not too much on each other …. Plan to come check everything out on June 30th, when we unveil science and history under one roof!

Wonderful work-study Ashley tackles the blue wall

Wonderful work-study Ashley tackles the blue wall

Curator Katie demonstrates that it's all in the wrist

Curator Katie demonstrates that it's all in the wrist (and all on her pants)

Soon to be our fantastic new exhibit space

Soon to be our fantastic new exhibit space

Visualize exciting science exhibits!

Visualize exciting science exhibits!

“Bright Ideas”

by Brent Carmack, Assistant Director, Fort Collins Museum

There’s a new exhibit in the lobby of the Fort Collins Museum that ushers in a new era for both the Fort Collins Museum and Discovery Science Center. 

The “Bright Ideas” exhibit is the first joint exhibit between the Fort Collins Museum and Discovery Science Center as we move forward with our partnership.  As you probably know by now, Discovery Science Center will be closing its doors on May 30 and moving into the Fort Collins Museum building, bringing with it the great hands-on science experience Discovery Science Center has developed a reputation for over the past twenty-five years. On June 30 the new Fort Collins Museum & Discovery Science Center will open and serve as a transition facility until our new home is completed (sometime in late 2011).

Blending the cultural and scientific, the hands-on interactions with the historical artifacts, the “Bright Ideas” exhibit exemplifies what the Fort Collins Museum & Discovery Science Center means when we say “we’re better together.” In this exhibit, for example, you can learn about Thomas Edison and his inventions; see different kinds of electric light bulbs, some of which you can turn on with the push of a button; and see photos and artifacts that illustrate how electricity has played a part in the local history of Fort Collins.

Come check it out and let us know what you think. As the Fort Collins Museum & Discovery Science Center merger continues, look for more examples of the blurring of lines between science and culture, and start thinking about your relationship with the world in new ways.

"Bright Ideas" exhibit in progress

"Bright Ideas" exhibit in progress

The finished exhibit

The finished exhibit

Interact with the light bulbs -- just press a button

Interact with the light bulbs -- just press a button

One of the historic artifacts is a power meter from Fort Collins Light & Power

One of the historic artifacts is a power meter from Fort Collins Light & Power (on left)

Touch the plasma wall -- the human body conducts electricity

Touch the plasma wall -- the human body conducts electricity

 

 

 

“Bottled Up!”

by Terry Burton, Digital Media Coordinator, Fort Collins Museum & Discovery Science Center

We recently had an opportunity to participate in the Denver Community Museum‘s latest challenge, “Bottled Up!” Here’s the challenge:

“What are the experiences you would like to preserve? Fill a bottle with the memories of people and places from your life. Saved material can take any form – messages, objects, smells, sounds, photos – anything that shares your story.”

We were intrigued, both with the challenge itself and with the idea of being part of an exhibit process that not only involves the community, but is completely created by the community. We got the staff of Discovery Science Center and the Fort Collins Museum together to brainstorm what we could create, and came up with a series of twelve bottles, with magnets in the lids, which are attached to a sheet of corrugated metal:

exhibit2

Each bottle contains a different item. Some items seem to be history related, some seem to be science related. Or are they so easy to classify? For example, one bottle contains the shed skin of DSC’s ball python, Slinky. We talked about how that could represent science — an animal’s natural process of shedding its skin — but how it could also represent history — the past history of the snake. We hope that visitors to the exhibit will see the different possible relationships and overlaps between the objects in the bottles — between science and history — and come up with their own classification systems by rearranging the bottles on the metal sheet.

Here’s what we wrote to explain the exhibit:

“Making Sense of the World

As human beings, we seem to have a natural urge to classify things. From Aristotle to Linnaeus to you putting socks in one drawer and t-shirts in another, it’s one of the ways we use to make sense of our world.

Museums certainly do this – we are the quintessential classifiers. Besides classifying little things, like butterflies, we make big distinctions: this is art. This is history. This is science. And we organize our stuff accordingly.

At the Fort Collins Museum and Discovery Science Center, we’re a history museum and a hands-on science center merging into one institution. So we’re spending a lot of time thinking about the relationships between history and science and looking for new ways to look at what we do.

These bottles contain some science stuff and some history stuff. Or do they? Which is which, or does it matter? Do you see relationships among these bottles? Make your own classifications.”

Here’s a visitor at the Denver Community Museum leaving a comment about our exhibit (photo courtesy of Jaime Kopke, Curator):

bottled-up1

“Bottled Up!” opened March 13 and runs through April 3rd at the Denver Community Museum. Hours are Thursdays, 2 – 7 pm and Fridays and Saturdays, 12 – 5 pm. Admission is free, and the museum is located at 1610 Little Raven St. Suite 120 in Denver.


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