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Leonardo da Vinci: The Genius and Science World’s Redesign (x-post Frivolous Verbosities)

This is from Frivolous Verbosities. If you like it, go there for more of my weird stuff!

Today I went to the Da Vinci: The Genius exhibition at the Telus World of Science, brought there by Grande Exhibitions, an exhibition company that travels worldwide.

There I was not only amazed at Leonardo’s genius and the incredible creation of his designs and blueprints. I was also amazed by the tremendous amount of work done to Science World.

First Impressions

A picture of Science World construction.
There are many signs of development at Science World. Even from the outside, one can see all the busy construction in the area in front of the entrance.

The construction at Science World will eventually develop into a “Science Park.” I’m not exactly sure how it’s going to be a park with all the concrete on the ground. Whatever they’re doing, it’s going to be finished this Summer (2012) and I feel that it will be a significant development.

A picture of a poster of the Mona Lisa.
As you approach the main entrance, you can see the main poster for the da Vinci exhibit.

The main entrance to Science World.
The main entrance looks improved, with a clean and polished look.

Starting from when I looked at the main entrance, I could already tell that I was going to have an experience different from those that I had at Science World when I was a younger child. The old, tired ball machine is gone, soon to be replaced by something else. The main entrance, still in development, has a very slick design that reminds a person of newly-developed university buildings.

The science world store.
The newly renovated Science World store, now called Kaleidoscope.

The BMO Sustainability Gallery.
The first gallery you see at Science World is the Our World gallery, a gallery formerly on the second floor.

I don’t have pictures of what these used to look like, but I could say that by 2010 I was already getting a tad tired of the old look. If I remember correctly, the old look looked like it came straight out of an early 2000’s educational program. It didn’t even make me feel good from nostalgia any more, meaning that it really had to be changed.

It’s a lot better now. I’ll have to get back to Our World later, which was the gallery I photographed the most (Unfortunately I don’t think I have a single photo of the Nature gallery and what not).

However, we have to get to the bulk of this post.

Da Vinci: The Genius

Unfortunately, no photo or video was allowed in the special exhibit, and I didn’t want to break the rules.

Given that, I’ll still try to recall the events as best I can. The video at the top of the post shows the exhibit at another place, and I sort of use it as a memory aid.

Basically, as you walk through the exhibit, you see the things in an order that I’m partially certain about:

  • Introduction and Leonardo’s Codices
  • Flying Machines
  • Hydraulic Machines
  • Physical and Mechanical Machines
  • Sculpture
  • War Machines
  • Paintings (There are two big exhibits, one about The Last Supper and the other about The Mona Lisa)

I won’t get too much into everything, as I encourage anyone to see this event if you live in Vancouver. If you don’t then there’s the video.

As you can see from the video, the exhibit features incredible wooden machines built from the designs in Leonardo’s manuscripts. The mechanical machines have workable moving parts that the viewer is allowed to touch and play with, intensifying the experience for anyone.

Of course, the exhibit was incredibly informative, showing Leonardo with more depth of information than a typical exhibit. It really is one of the most comprehensive collections that one could ever see. Not only does it go into great detail about his work, it goes into the details of his life. Keep in mind that we have very limited information about Leonardo.

Also, there are 3D animations of drawings such as The Vitruvian Man among many others, as well as a nice short video which discusses The Last Supper in great detail, going into painting techniques, inspirations, and its influence on the world of painting.

By far, my favourite thing in the whole exhibit was the replication of the tank which Leonardo designed. Not only was an armored car with cannons ahead of Leonardo’s time, it looks surprisingly similar to actual tanks.

The thing that amazes me about Leonardo is that during most of the time that he was doing his work he was probably alone, but not lonely. When one is alone, if he has a genius inside him, he can focus enough on his work so that he doesn’t feel lonely. I cannot even fathom what this is like, as my own brain works almost completely differently — without other people to which I very regularly talk and show what I’m thinking, I’d probably lose interest in many things. It probably takes a different level of maturity to be completely devoted to one’s work, which I currently don’t have yet.

I highly recommend this exhibit for anyone in the area (you know who you are). It’s very enlightening and definitely worth the money.

The Rest of Science World

The Eureka! gallery.
The redesigned and relocated Eureka! gallery.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to photograph the galleries other than Eureka! and Our World. However, I can already see that this design is much more appealing to younger kids (Science World’s main target audience). This photo shows that Science World has a new, polished, and friendly look, making an already inviting gallery even more so.

I’ll now go to the Our World Gallery in detail.

Our World is a gallery primarily about resource consumption, environmental issues, and alternative sources of energy. Formerly looking gimmicky and tired in its second-floor location, the gallery now looks stylish and informative.

A display and thank you message.
A neat little display at the entrance to Our World.

Pictured: inside the gallery.
A shot showing much of the gallery.

A picture of a jet-engine-turbine thing.
The interactive Wind Power exhibit. Determine which blade angle causes the fastest rotation!

A picture that is not of a jet-engine-turbine thing.
Another angle of the wind power exhibit.

A picture of waterguns.
The new water gun targeting game. If you’re not hitting the target, you’re wasting water!

A picture of a computer display behind the waterguns.
Instead of a score, it tells you how much water you’ve wasted.

The entire experience was new and I feel good for the kids who will view this gallery. Definitely a great achievement in design for Science World.

Wrapping Up

An ominously foreboding hollow white tower.
This mysteriously promising tower greeted me once again as I exited.

After eating at Triple O’s (which, by the way, also has been redesigned very well) and walking around Science World for a bit more, it was time to leave. As I left for the SkyTrain, I felt refreshed and enlightened.

I definitely want to do things like this more. It’s a much better summer activity than staying at home and using the computer for 8 hours (the activity that I did for the most part of several summers in the past), and I’ll be sure to keep this place posted with whatever I do.


Photos were taken with a phone.

The Da Vinci: The Genius exhibition started at April 28, 2012 and will end on September 3, 2012.

2 responses

  1. obligatory removal of giant bold <h2> advertisement :d

    2012/07/01 at 23:24

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