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Below The Surface

Thursday, October 31, 2013

COOL MOVES Gets You Moving!

I was so excited when we unpacked our newest exhibit, "COOL MOVES: The Artistry of Motion," in September because this exhibit was all about motion and physics!


COOL MOVES highlights the active, dynamic, and fun physics of bodies-in-motion. This is one of the most dynamic traveling exhibits ECHO has hosted since I've been here - I've seen adults and children play in this exhibit for hours! When you visit this exhibit you'll see that the exhibits are moving and so are our guests!  In fact, the exhibit requires you to move, either to set things in motion or to make noises and patterns.

For example, the COOL MOVES exhibit has a Theremin. What is a Theramin? It's a musical instrument that you play, not by touching it, but by moving around it, near it, changing your proximity to it, but never physically coming in contact with it. Wave one hand and you can change the pitch of the instrument, move the other hand and raise or lower the volume. It uses radio frequencies and the proximity of the user to create sounds. Another fantastic aspect of COOL MOVES is the gyroscopic art station. Here, you can set two pendulum-like gyroscopes in motion and create one-of-a-kind works of art that you can take home or share on our art wall. I've witnessed people staying at this station for a long time.


One of my favorite components of Cool Moves is the Bernoulli table. I'll readily admit that I spend more time playing with moving air and various objects than the average adult, but it is hard to resist the excitement when you float a ball in mid-air by directing air, not up, but side-ways. Using the same principles that keep airplanes aloft, you direct air to keep small beach-balls floating.  Speaking of air, you have the opportunity to control mini-tornado too!  You determine the vortex of wind, whipping up a partially enclosed column speeds to see what kind of tornado you can make. You can even stick your hand to play in the whirlwind.

While the wind whips around outside and the temperatures drop, we invite you to come down to ECHO and warm up by moving around and exploring the amazing physics of motion and the artistry it creates!

COOL MOVES will be at ECHO through January 6!

Photos courtesy of Ecotarium. 


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