Happy 100th, Frank!
Celebrating [the legacy of] Exploratorium founder Frank Oppenheimer (1912–1985)
Saturday, August 18, 2012
10 am – 5 pm
Frank Friedman Oppenheimer was born in New York in August, 1912. As a boy growing up he painted, played the flute and crafted his own made-up science experiments at home. Frank was a tinkerer, who grew up to become a physicist, science educator, activist – and the founder of the Exploratorium. On Saturday, August 18, 2012, come to the Exploratorium and join in our celebration of Frank’s life and his creation of the world’s foremost hands-on science, art and human perception museum.
From 10 am to 5 pm, visitors to the Exploratorium can take part in a variety of events and activities honoring Frank. At the Explorables table from 11 am to 2pm, you can make a spinning top, one of Frank’s favorite DIY projects. Throughout the day in the Mind Theater, you can see a series of Exploratorium ‘home movies,’ featuring the early days of the museum, as well as footage of Frank engaging with visitors and staff. The day’s events will also feature a Frank-themed presentation in the McBean Theater, screenings of some of his favorite films from the museum’s Cinema Arts archives (including the Eames’ classic Powers of Ten)
In celebrating 100 years since Exploratorium founder Frank Oppenheimer's birth, you can find new photos, facts, quotes, and more on our "Frank 100" Tumblr or by following the #frank100 hashtag on Twitter, through August 14,2012.
For more on the history and legacy of Frank Oppenheimer - go here.
And, the Exploratorium has a museum history web page devoted to Frank Oppenheimer here.
Here is the schedule of events for Saturday, August 18th:
Exploratorium Home Movies
10:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
Watch a collection of videos curated by our Cinema Arts department, featuring the museum’s early days as well as footage of Frank engaging with visitors and staff.
Daredevil Bicyclists (1915, 1 min.)
Exploratorium Beginnings (1969, 4 min.), by KQED TV
Frank Quotations (1969–1983, 15 min.)
Exploratorium (1974, 15 min.) by Jon Boorstin
Staff Remembrances of Frank (1984, 15 min.)
Fiddle Dee Dee (1947, 5 min.) by Norman McLaren
Swing Movie (ca. 1980–82, 6 min.) by Liz Keim
Explorables: Spinning Tops
11:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m.
Just past the McBean Theater
Meet with Explorables volunteers to make some of the world’s oldest toys. Making tops was one of Frank’s favorite activities.
A Frank-Inspired Floor Walk with Ron Hipschman
Sign up across from the Exploratorium Store
Follow veteran staff scientist Ron Hipschman on a tour of exhibits originally built or inspired by Frank Oppenheimer. Limited capacity; first come, first served.
A Tribute to Frank Oppenheimer - With Liz Keim, Ron Hipschman, and Exploratorium Alumni Rachel Meyer and Sally Duensing
Enjoy stories and some of Frank’s favorite films from the archives with Exploratorium scientist Ron Hipschman and Cinema Arts Director Liz Keim, along with special guests Rachel Meyer, Executive Director of CuriOdyssey at Coyote Point, and Frank’s longtime friend and colleague Sally Duensing.
Fiddle Dee Dee (1947, 5 min., 16mm), by animation pioneer Norman McLaren, reflects the gaiety of an old time fiddle, played by a Gatineau Valley fiddler.
Tops (1969, 7 min.), by Charles and Ray Eames, is a classic toy film of pure cinematic poetry, featuring a lyrical score by Elmer Bernstein.
Zea (1981, 5 min., 16mm), by André and Jean-Jacques Leduc, transforms the commonplace into magic.
Pacific 231(1949, 10 min., 16mm), by Jean Mitry, is an award-winning tribute to the steam locomotive, set to music by Arthur Honegger.
Ikarus (1973, 2 min., 16mm), by Chuck Hudina, captures a slow-motion dive at 3,000 frames per second.
Tape Generation (2011, 3 min.), by Johan Rijpma, portrays rolls of tape undergoing an unpredictable, and yet somehow familiar, process of development and degeneration.
These classic exhibits were originally built by Frank Oppenheimer:
Bicycle Wheel Gyro
Precision Through A Pinhole
Relative Motion Pendulum
Blood Cells in The Eye
Corner Reflector, Shadow
Center of Gravity