- About Us
- Join + Support
$10 Members; Free for Lab Members
$10 Add-On Ticket for the Tactile Dome Available for Purchase Onsite
Adults Only (18+)
Note: Some programs have limited seating and will be made available to visitors on a first-come, first-served basis.
Join us as Cinema Arts presents Attention, a world premiere of new work by Pamela Z with the Del Sol String Quartet. Also tonight, explore Pairings: Long Live the Olive, which includes robust presentations and refreshing conversations designed to inspire your scientific palate. Plus, crawl through our pitch-black Tactile Dome, play with exhibits, and experience Cow Eye and other demonstrations.
Note: Separate ticket required; includes museum admission.
Attention is a new, hybrid work for string quartet with video where voices and electronic devices explore the ways in which attention and focus are challenged in today’s culture. In the work, the musicians will play instruments, sing, speak, move, and interact with each other and devices in a circular loop to create a mesh of interlocking sonic events and projected visuals.
In celebration of this world premiere, the Del Sol String Quartet will perform three additional compositions, resonant with the themes and technological adaptations present in Pamela Z’s new work.
A moderated conversation and Q & A will follow the performance.
Pamela Z is a composer/performer and media artist who makes solo works combining wide-ranging vocal techniques with electronic processing, samples, gesture-activated MIDI controllers, and video. She has toured extensively throughout the United States, Europe, and Japan. Her work has been presented at venues and exhibitions including Bang on a Can (NY), the Japan Interlink Festival, Other Minds (SF), the Venice Biennale, and the Dakar Biennale. She’s created installations and has composed scores for dance, film, and chamber ensembles. Her awards include a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Doris Duke Artist Impact Award, Creative Capital, the Herb Alpert Award, MAP, the ASCAP Award, an Ars Electronica honorable mention, the NEA/Japan-United States Fellowship, and a Djerrassi Resident Artist Program residency.
Del Sol String Quartet was hailed by Gramophone as “masters of all musical things they survey.” The quartet is a leading force in twenty-first-century chamber music, vibrantly exploring the stories and sounds of the Pacific Rim. Founded in 1992 and based in San Francisco, the group devotes itself to commissioning and performing new works, collaborating across disciplines, and creating innovative educational programs.
Del Sol has released eight critically acclaimed recordings, including three on the GRAMMY® award–winning Sono Luminus label. The New York Times praised Del Sol’s most recent recording, Scrapyard ExoMca, saying “see if your foot can stay still once you put on this funky disc of rhythmically infectious . . . music played by the adventurous Del Sol String Quartet.”
Del Sol has commissioned and premiered in over 100 works by a diverse range of composers, including Terry Riley, Mason Bates, Gabriela Lena Frank, Chinary Ung, Mohammed Fairouz, Tania León, Ken Ueno, Peter Sculthorpe, Reza Vali and Per Nørgård. The group has performed in prominent concert series nationwide, including the Kennedy Center; Library of Congress; National Gallery of Art; Smithsonian’s Freer Gallery in Washington, DC; Symphony Space, NYC; Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music, Santa Cruz; Chautauqua Institution, Chautauqua, NY; Clefworks Festival, Montgomery, AL; Colorado Music Festival, Boulder; Other Minds Festival, San Francisco; Santa Fe Opera; University of Vermont Lane Series; and internationally in Switzerland, France, China, South Korea, Canada, and Mexico. Del Sol has also held residencies at various educational institutions across the United States.
Fisher Bay Observatory Gallery
The discovery of a new dish does more for human happiness than the discovery of a new star.
—Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, Physiologie du Gout, 1825
Join us for robust presentations and refreshing conversations designed to inspire your scientific palate.
Learn more about the series, Pairings: Cultivating a Taste for Science Through Food.
Tonight’s Menu: Long Live the Olive
The celebrated olive, a favored food, medicine, fuel, and perfume for over 5,000 years, is central to the Mediterannean diet now associated with increased longevity and cardiovascular health. Whether plucked green or left to gradually ripen until brown, purple, or black, olives must be fermented and cured to dispel their bitterness before being eaten. Pressed from perfectly ripe olives, extra-virgin oils are judged in part for a peppery, stinging sensation felt in the throat—a cough-inducing astringency that indicates freshness.
The chemical credited for this sensation is called oleocanthal, a natural anti-inflammatory compound that behaves a lot like the drug ibuprofen. In addition to suppressing inflammation-causing enzymes, oleocanthal has been shown to have a preventative effect on Alzheimer’s Disease and some cancers.
Join Gary Beauchamp, one of the world’s leading experts on chemosensory science, in a live chat to discuss the exciting medical potential of oleocanthal, which he first discovered while tasting fresh-pressed olive oil in 1999.
Emeritus Director and President of the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia, Gary Beauchamp serves as a scientific advisor to numerous governmental and private organizations, including the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health. Most recently he sat on the Insitute of Medicine Committee on Strategies to Reduce Salt Intake. Dr. Beauchamp maintains an active research program at Monell, exploring varied topics related to taste, olfaction and chemesthesis. Trained as a psychobiologist, his research has contributed to advancements in the fields of developmental psychology, physiological psychology, and perception; he has also made important contributions in the fields of genetics, developmental biology, immunobiology, ethology, and molecular biology.
His awards include the Claude Pepper Award of Excellence from the National Institute on Deafness & Other Communication Disorders Advisory Council (1990-97) and the Outstanding Achievement in the Chemical Senses Award in 1999 from the Association for Chemoreception Sciences. Current research interests include genetics of chemosensation, development and aging of taste and smell, taste interactions and the role of smell and taste in food and beverage choice and acceptance. Dr. Beauchamp received his bachelor’s degree in biology from Carleton College and his Ph.D. in biopsychology from The Pritzker School of Medicine of the University of Chicago.
Bernard and Barbro Osher West Gallery
Take an excursion through total darkness in our Tactile Dome. Crawl, slide, and bump your way through the pitch-dark Dome using your sense of touch as your only guide through its chambers and mazes.
Please Note: Due to the nature of this experience, certain restrictions apply. Guests who are afraid of the dark; claustrophobic; have back, neck, or knee injuries; or are in their third trimester of pregnancy should not participate. Guests wearing casts are prohibited. Also, please wear comfortable clothes.
Learn more about the Tactile Dome.
6:00–9:45 unless noted
Various locations throughout the museum
Ticketing at 6:00 p.m., first come, first served
Bernard and Barbro Osher West Gallery
Draw hypnotically flowing patterns with a swinging table, and watch friction cause the patterns to slowly shrink along a spiral path. Pick up a ticket to reserve your spot in line for this popular activity.
Bechtel Central Gallery
Tune in to surrounding sounds by experimenting with strings and vibrations, and use electromagnets to build a basic speaker. Learn how to listen with your bones, and explore the workings of the inner ear.
Cow Eye or Flower Dissection (alternating)
Do cows see color? How does a lens work? Examine the intricate structure of a cow eye to learn about similar structures in our own eyes, as well as some key differences.
Stigma, stamen, pistil, anther, style: Uncover the beautiful architecture of flower anatomy, and gather some surprising strategies that plants use to reproduce.
Bernard and Barbro Osher West Gallery
Everything is not as it seems—at first. Pick a card, any card, and watch the Explainers reveal some surprising aspects of human perception.