It’s not often that an organization combines science and quirkiness: those of you who know me know that that’s one of the qualities that first attracted me to the Exploratorium. But the Oxford Museum of the History of Science seems to be another rare place where exhibit and event programmers seem especially inspired.
To see what I mean, peruse this fascinating page about a recent exhibition, on view from May to October 2011, the MHS had about eccentricity. Not content to display run-of-the-mill telescopes and such, these curators chose to display historical artifacts that are, well, curious. For instance, visitors last year could have seen an astrolabe thought to have belonged to Nostradamus, or viewed an ingenious clockwork flytrap dating from early-twentieth-century Japan. The museum also held an eccentricity debate in which various eccentrics discussed “the nature and role, whether creative or disruptive, of eccentricity.”
I love these people.