Monday, 14 July 2008

The Art and Craft of Saving the World

Last month saw an interesting symposium held in London to explore the relationships between craft and climate change inspired by the Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef exhibition at The Hayward (11 June - 17 August 2008). With a keynote discussion from the co-directors of the Institute for Figuring and panel members from the craft council and artists, sculptors and scientists from all over the world, the discussions were lively and lots of interesting points about engaging the public with scientific issues were raised.

For details of this and other events from the Institute for Figuring go to their home page.

Comments from the first Ideas Cafe

Last week saw the first Ideas Cafe at the Manchester Museum. Some really ... interesting ideas came out of it, although if I'm being honest I'm not sure a "smog disco" on roller skates is something I want to try and write a risk assessment for!

There were also more realistic ideas from the other groups, I liked the idea of creating a flag for Manchester and investigating the ecological past of Manchester. The group that wanted to put on talks about space for children obviously knew I was there as that's what I used to do. Other great ideas included an art exhibition based on dental images and equipment and an investigation of the history of Science in Manchester.

Doorstep gave us a new (well new for me) way of thinking about projects which lead us to these more unusual ideas.

If you want to add your own ideas for the Manchester Science Festival then come along to the next Ideas Cafe on 22nd July at the MOSI cafe, reserve your place here. Everyone with ideas for what they want in the festival is welcome to come along and get involved, I look forward to meeting more of you there.

Friday, 4 July 2008

Another Ideas Cafe... 22 July

The Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) in association with the Manchester Beacon for Public Engagement presents...


6.00pm, Tuesday July 22nd, Museum of Science and Industry Cafe, Liverpool Road, Castlefield, Manchester


Manchester Science Festival aims to enthuse and inspire everyone about science, technology and engineering. This is your chance to get involved and influence the programming of the festival, taking place in venues across Manchester in October and November. Festival Director, Laura Drane will be on hand to explain more about the 2008 themes which are:

"Manchesticity" - the city's endeavours, achievements, people, places and ideas

Mind & Body - activities and topics about our brains and brawn

Planet - exploring our impact on and use of the earth, and looking into space

The Elements - atoms; earth, wind, water, fire; and of course, the weather!


Community groups, academics, artists, venue owners, curators, healthcare professionals, technologists, creatives, students, Manchester fact anybody with an interest in science. Everybody welcome. We'll bring the cafe - you bring the ideas.


Reserve your place online at:

For further information on The Manchester Beacon for Public Engagement - a partnership connecting people, places and knowledge click here: