I’ve been gone from this site for a long time. I’ve been teaching science full-time, and I’ve been (among other things) having fun with painting science. Since I updated the header image (left), I thought I’d better explain a bit of what is going on with it.
First, if it looks at all familiar, that is because I stole the composition from Composition VIII by Kandinsky (right). He had synesthesia, which means that he saw sound, and decided to paint it. Yes, his was much, much better.
But I had a lot of fun with it! I turned his big white angle into a normal distribution; turned the big red and black circles into the coordinates of Earth as written on the voyager space craft; and tried to fill it with a number of other nerdisms. Leave a comment if you can identify any of them!
I’ve also been getting into painting with chaotic pendulums:
I plan to make a video about them soon, and I recently did a Science Slam about Chaos in general. In the meantime, I post some of those photos on instagram, so feel free to check those out. Here is one, to get your appetite wet with paint:
I just got back from a quick trip to Chicago for the North American Science Slam, put together by EURAXESS. Amazing city, excellent slams, and wonderful people.
I was pleasantly surprised with Chicago as a city, even if everyone drives everywhere. It is pretty nifty. I also was floored by the Field Museum, which officially has my favourite museum exhibit: Plants of the World. As a lover of all things botany, I’ve sought out a lot of similar exhibits, but this was the one ring to rule them all. The exhibit itself was beautiful, instead of boring dried pressed plants, they had a huge variety of super realistic plastic plants, making it a much more life-like experience than usual. More importantly, they focused almost entirely on plants that are important to the human species (foods, dyes, building materials, and more!)… which I think probably gives visitors a much more relatable experience.
Anyway, I was in Chicago to help judge the science slam, and judging them was not easy! They were all excellent slams, and they were all very different from one another. Louise-Emmanuelle Paris played the flute and showed off some parkour skills in her slam. Joseph Meany melted faces with the ever-shrinking history of computer technology.
At the end, Kavita Chandra was the grand winner who will be flying to Europe in 2016. She managed to make her story of researching cancer both relatable and fun, and even got pretty creative with a can of spray-paint.
What a fun event! Thanks again to EURAXESS for generously inviting and bringing me across the continent!
Two last things while on the topic of EURAXESS. Congrats to Leonardo Parreira for winning the Brazil chapter of the Science Slam. Freaking awesome. It was entertaining enough that I enjoyed watching it, even though it was in a language I don’t speak. Now that is some entertaining SCIENCE!
I am particularly excited for Leonardo because I know him – I met him through the magic of EURAXESS. More over, I’ve recently started a partnership with a communication-training group he heads in Brazil, called GATU.