Nature’s Toolbox Exhibit at Chicago’s Field Museum

Daphne and I road tripped to Chicago this past weekend.  By the end of the six hour drive we were a bit loopy, entertaining ourselves with a google search of “fun riddles.”  Considering English is Daphne’s third language after Dutch and French, I was astounded by how quickly she solved all of the wordplay riddles I threw at her.

Fittingly, she didn’t skip a beat on this knee-slapping series:

What do you call someone who speaks three languages? Trilingual.
What do you call someone who speaks two languages? Bilingual.
What do you call someone who speaks one language? American.

It’s true, I’m the only American in this first cohort of Biomimicry PhD students, and definitely the linguistic underachiever of the group. Bill speaks Mandarin Chinese in addition to English, and even translated a TEDTalk given by Janine Benyus on Biomimicry into Traditional Chinese on TED.com to expand access to this exciting discipline.

Anyway – back to our trip to Chicago! On October 20th Daphne and I visited Chicago’s Field Museum to check out a temporary exhibit called Nature’s Toolbox: Biodiversity, Art, and Invention presented by Art Works for Change.  There were some very interesting pieces.  My favorite was an experimental short by Catherine Chalmers titled Safari.  I like how she played with scale, helping us see the world of insects in a whole new way.

It reminded me of the work of Ann Hamilton, an acclaimed visual artist who visited UAkron earlier this fall to discuss her vision.

I think film would be an appropriate media to document the behaviors of some of the lab creatures here on the UAkron campus.  Perhaps we could do some close-up video of the many spider species in Todd Blackledge’s lab or the geckos in Peter Niewiarowski’s lab

Sucrose walls at Nature’s Toolbox Exhibit at Chicago’s Field Museum

Sucrose Wall – Nature’s Toolbox Exhibit

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