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    Arkansas State University Museum presents two new exhibits

    4:38 AM, Jun 5, 2010   |    comments
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    "Science and Art" features artists integrating scientific principals into their art and includes hands-on science activities. "Illusion Confusion" also offers hands-on activities for children and adults, allowing them to learn more about how perceptions can create illusions. "Science and Art" includes the mathematical principals of origami; the physics, mathematics, and computer science of 1-bit digital music; electrical engineering and computer science in wearable art; and nanotechnology and computer science in a multimedia interactive experience.

    The work of Robert Lang, Ph.D., one of the world's leading origami masters, shows how following simple folding rules and some basic mathematical principals allows the creation of a complex and beautiful 3D world of art made from paper. An origami table allows visitors to create their own works of art to take home.

    Visitors will also enjoy the creations of Tristan Perich, the inventor of the project "1-Bit Music." The 1-Bit Music project is part art, part physics and part mathematics. Low-fidelity 1-bit compositions of electronic music are delivered to listeners via an on/off switch, microchip, battery, earphone jack, and volume control, all squeezed into a plastic CD case. Teenagers will especially enjoy this exhibit as it explores the music of the future and the scientific phenomenon of audio frequency.

    Wearable computers can also be found on display in "Science and Art." Leah Buechley, assistant professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), uses electronics and textiles to build soft, wearable computers. A display of Buechley's "clubbing shirt" allows visitors to select and see the different LED display patterns designed and programmed into the shirt.

    Rounding out the exhibit is electronic artist and computer scientist Scott Snibbe, who introduces visitors to the concept of the nanoscale. "Three Drops" is a multimedia experience that invites participants to move in front of a large screen and interact with projections of water at the macroscale, the microscale and then the nanoscale level, thereby allowing them to experience how the physical properties of water change at these three different scales.

    "Illusion Confusion" plays with the sense of perception-things are not always as they seem. Most of the exhibit is hands-on, encouraging visitors to explore and play with the perception of light and optical illusions. "Illusion Confusion" investigates how light refracts and reflects and how mirrors and mazes can create confusion or conflict with images. Visitors can laugh at themselves and others in the anti-gravity mirror or guess at the mysterious images. Visitors will seem to be able to lift both feet off the ground and even to make their heads disappear.

    "Science and Art" and "Illusion Confusion" are both brought to the ASU Museum through its membership in the Arkansas Discovery Network, funded by the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation.

    The ASU Museum is a great place to get out of the heat and spend some quality family time this summer. Treasure Hunts, available in the museum's gift shop, are a fun way to explore the museum; when visitors complete their maps, they select a prize. The cost is $1.50 for the younger children's Treasure Hunt, and there is also a jewelry Treasure Hunt that is popular with teens and tweens for $3-$5, depending on the number of visitors in the group. The museum also offers archeology-themed and western-themed birthday parties for children; reserve a time now. The ASU Museum is open Tuesday from 9 a.m.-7 p.m.; Wednesday through Saturday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sunday afternoon from 1-5 p.m. The museum is closed on Mondays and holidays.

    The ASU Museum is located at 320 University Loop West Circle, Jonesboro, on the campus of Arkansas State University.

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