February 20, 2009

Wonder Cabinet

There is a great event happening in Manhattan this Saturday, February 21, at the Cantor Film Center on the NYU campus.

The theme of the day will be ‘Wonder Cabinet’ which harkens back to a time before staid museums enticed the masses and eccentric people displayed their personal collections of rarities and oddities. Inside those display cases of old; one could find scientific specimens mixed with theatrical props, objects with fascinating descriptions that defied proper explanation and various items that blurred the line between fact and fiction. It is this commingling of science and art that is the central thread of the eight talks to be given on Saturday. I am most excited for a presentation wedged between literary heavyweight, Jonathan Lethem and innovative director, Bob Sabiston by an interesting paper engineer named Matt Shlian.

Matt is taking a break from his work in Michigan with Max Shtein where they are finding how complex designs in paper can be reduced to the nanoscale or incorporated into tomorrow’s energy saving materials. When he is not exploring the intersection of paper folding and protein folding, Matt can be found teaching a class on paper engineering in one of the only other university courses in the country.

‘Wonder Cabinet’ is curated by Lawrence Weschler and hosted by The New York Institute for the Humanities and the Humanities Initiative. This all day affair is free and open to the public, so stop by if you are in the neighborhood.

More detailed information including directions, a detailed schedule and presenter bios can be found here.

- Kyle

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