World Thinker’s Ideas – Challenge our Perceptions

Most of us trust our eyes. We may believe in what all our other senses tell us, taste, hearing, touch, smell, but vision is usually special. We are constantly taking in information and we try to make sense of the world around us.

Lottolab studio is the world’s first public perception research space. Neuroscientist Beau Lotto  is the founder of this hybrid art studio and science lab. Interactive dazzling art-sci experiments are used to explore our perception. There are synesthetic workshops where kids and adults make abstract paintings that computers interpret into music.

The Bee Matrix installation places a live bee in a transparent enclosure where gallery goers may watch it seek nectar in a virtual meadow of luminous Plexiglas flowers.There is Street Science with real experiments in public spaces

Beau Lotto unites and integrates different disciplines and he has involved children in scientific research. He believes that only by integrating different disciplines can we truly understand ourselves. The aim with the projects is to explore the ecology of mind.

A program called the “i,scientist” led to the publication of the first ever peer-reviewed scientific paper written by schoolchildren (“Blackawton Bees,” December 2010).

The kids analysed the data. The figures were drawn in crayons and the paper contains sentences like. . .

“Once upon a time.  .  .”

“Then we put the bees into the fridge (and made bee pie;-))”

‘We discovered that bumble-bees can use a combination of colour and spatial relationships in deciding which colour of flower to forage from. We also discovered that science is cool and fun because you get to do stuff that no one has ever done before. (Children from Blackawton)’.

Beau Lotto and is colleagues are changing the way we understanding perception and our perceptions of what science can be.

Photo: “Sunflower With Bubbles And Bee” by njaj

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