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At the Exploratorium: Pulse Spiral

Fog Bridge at the Exploratorium
Fog Bridge at the Exploratorium
Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Have you got a Thursday free? Want to fill it with an unusual activity? Go to the Exploratorium and interact with the Pulse Spiral Exhibition. You can experience it through August 14th in the Exploratorium's East Gallery at Pier 15 from 6:00 PM to 10:00 PM.

The exhibit is an installation by artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer and it makes heartbeats, yours included, awesomely visible. Sensor handles beneath a spiral tower of light bulbs pick up your heartbeat and display it as a flashing light at the bottom of the tower. As more heartbeats are added, yours moves upward in the display until hundreds of beats are displayed as pulsing, flashing lights. Each new heartbeat moves your own upwards so the display is constantly changing with each new rhythm added. According to artist Lozano-Hemmer, the towering spiral in which the light bulbs are arranged is an extraordinary spatial distribution found in nature. The exhibit contains 300 incandescent light bulbs, a heart-rate sensor, a computer, a DMX controller, and 3 miles of cable, among other things not the least of which are the people who visit the exhibit with their beating hearts...

Rafael Lozano-Hemmer has had recent solo exhibitions at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Fundacion Telefonica in Buenos Aires, and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney, Australia. He represented Mexico at the Venice Biennale in 2007, the first Mexican artist to officially do so. His works are in collections in museums around the world.

To visit the Pulse Spiral at the Exploratorium, you just need to come on a Thursday from 6:00 to 10:00 PM and purchase an Admission Ticket: $15.00 for Non-Members, $10.00 for Members, and Free for Lab-Members. Head over to the East Gallery at Pier 15 to find the exhibit. This is an evening for adults only (18 yrs+) event. Enjoy!