Conversations About Landscape: Toward a Global Emotional Awareness

The Atlas of Human Emotions

Thursday, March 30, 2017 • 6:00 p.m.

Fisher Bay Observatory Gallery

Free; RSVP required. Email reserve@exploratorium.edu, or call 415.528.4444, and choose option 5.

In 2017, we present Landscapes of Hope and Imagination, a series of conversations about the variety of responses to current social and political challenges, including individual expression, community organizing, scientific research, and place-based activism. ​


In order to get to the New World, we needed a map. In order to get to a state of calm, we need a map of the emotions.   – The Dalai Lama

The Atlas of Emotions is an online tool to help us explore the landscape of human emotions, where they come from, and how they affect us. Inspired by conversations with the Dalai Lama about the science of emotions, psychologist Paul Ekman worked with Stamen Design and empathy researcher Eve Ekman to create this visual journey through our emotional world.

There are five universal human emotions—enjoyment, sadness, disgust, anger, and fear—according to a survey of leading emotion researchers. The Atlas visually translates each of these emotional continents into a landscape, representing its related emotional states with peaks along a scale of intensity.

Join us for a presentation of the Atlas, and a dialogue on how emotional health and understanding can build cooperation in an increasingly complex world.

About the Presenters

Paul Ekman is a professor emeritus in psychology at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). His life’s work has been to bring the light of science to emotions, categorizing them and showing their universality across cultures worldwide.

Eve Ekman is a postdoctoral fellow at the UCSF Osher Center for Integrative Medicine. Her emotion research focuses on reducing stress and burnout.

In 2001, Eric Rodenbeck founded Stamen Design, where he is Creative Director and CEO. Stamen has a reputation for design and technical leadership in interactive mapping and live data visualization.

The series is funded by the California State Coastal Conservancy.