What's On At The California Academy of Sciences
Exhibits, Music, Art, Activities & Movies
January 2002


- Exhibits -

Closing January 15, 2002: Under Antarctic Ice
With hurricane-force winds and cold that can kill in minutes, Antarctica's surface hosts little year-round life. But beneath its frozen seas lies one of the earth's most stable and vibrant ecosystems - and one of its most enchanting realms. Norbert Wu - photographer, cinematographer, and writer - captures this surprisingly rich community at the bottom of the earth with forty spectacular large-format photographs featured in Under Antarctic Ice. Wu's photographs of Antarctica have been acclaimed as the finest photographs ever taken in this harsh environment. The exhibition, consisting of a selection of the most compelling photographs from Wu's three expeditions, offers viewers a close-up view of the severe conditions Wu and his team endured.
Under Antarctic Ice was developed by Norbert Wu Productions and produced by the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History. The exhibit may be viewed online at www.pgmuseum.org.

Ongoing through Spring 2002: Domestic California
Not too long ago Sacramento Street in the Financial District was a sparkling stream, flowing to the bay. And the parking lot near Fourth and Townsend? It was the bay.
The natural history of these and other spots in San Francisco is the subject of Domestic California a photography exhibit at The California Academy of Sciences. Artist Mark Brest van Kempen uses collages of digital photographs to create dual panoramic pictures of five locations in the city - one of the modern cityscape and one of the way it looked before there was a city.

Closing January 2, 2002: Russia's Great Voyages to America: Science Under Sail This exhibit tells the surprising story of Russia's role in exploring California and the Pacific Northwest. For the first time since the original expeditions, Russia's Great Voyages returns to California some of the thousands of animal and plant specimens, artifacts, illustrations and journal entries that the Russian explorers collected and created in the early nineteenth century.


The Academy will be open Christmas Eve, December 24; Christmas Day, December 25; New Years Eve, December 31; & New Years Day, January 1. The Academy of Sciences is open 365 days of the year from 10 am to 5 pm.


- Classical Music -

Celtic Music on the Hammered Dulcimer
The hammered dulcimer is a trapezoidal stringed instrument that is played with a pair of light hammers. The instrument's origins are unclear, with some scholars dating it back to the first millennium CE in the Middle East and others claiming it was developed in medieval Europe. The name "dulcimer" derived from Latin for "sweet sound," and this program by musician Glenn Morgan shows how apt that name is. Glenn sees himself as a sort of "dulcimer missionary," and he has recorded four albums of dulcimer music.
Saturday, January 12 1pm
Free with museum admission
California Academy of Sciences
(415) 750-7165


- Art -

Nigerian Sculpture (Artist In Residence)
For three months, Nigerian artist Geoffrey Nwogu will be at the California Academy of Sciences working on a sculpture installation in Cowell Hall. Visitors may watch as Nwogu creates a family of three deity figures modeled from mud clay, positioned in a decorative structure consisting of platform and backdrop. The finished work will resemble a typical mbari house, customarily built as a ritual offering to the gods in villages in Igboland, Southeastern Nigeria. This program is funded by the Creative Work Fund, San Francisco, which supports collaborations between local artists and non-profit institutions. The Academy was one of six recipients awarded grants in the Traditional Arts category in 2001.
Wednesdays through Saturdays, January 2-March 30 10 am - 4 pm
Free with museum admission.
California Academy of Sciences


- Photography -

Ongoing through Spring 2002: Domestic California
The natural history of San Francisco is the subject of the newest exhibit at The California Academy of Sciences: Domestic California. Artist Mark Brest van Kempen uses collages of digital photographs to create dual panoramic pictures of five locations in the city - one of the modern cityscape and one of the way it looked before there was a city.
California Academy of Sciences

Closing January 15, 2002: Under Antarctic Ice
Norbert Wu - photographer, cinematographer, and writer - captures this surprisingly rich community at the bottom of the earth with forty spectacular large format photographs featured in Under Antarctic Ice. Wu's photographs of Antarctica have been acclaimed as the finest photographs ever taken in this harsh environment. The exhibition, consisting of a selection of the most compelling photographs from Wu's three expeditions, offers viewers a close-up view of the severe conditions Wu and his team endured.
California Academy of Sciences

Under Antarctic Ice was developed by Norbert Wu Productions and produced by the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History. The exhibit may be viewed online at www.pgmuseum.org.


- Lectures -

Russian Navigational Instruments
John Middleton
Learn about 18th century navigational instruments used by the Russian Navy. John Middleton a member of the Russian Academy of Science leads visitors through the uses and functions of traditional exploration tools.
January 2 12:30 & 2:30 pm
FREE
California Academy of Sciences


Blue Nile: Ethiopia's River of Magic and Mystery
Virginia Morell
Worshipped as a god and feared as a source of evil spirits, the Blue Nile is one of Africa's greatest rivers. From its source in the Ethiopian highlands, the Blue Nile plunges a vertical mile in its course to the plains of Sudan, carving one of the most rugged and spectacular watercourses in the world. In 1999, author Virginia Morell and photographer Nevada Weir teamed up for an expedition. They traveled by foot, donkey, and raft from the river's headwaters to the Sudan border - a stretch of more than 500 miles. Morell tells the account of their journey along one of the most seldom visited rivers in the world in her book, Blue Nile: Ethiopia's River of Magic and Mystery. Using Weir's evocative photographs, Morell will share the duo's adventures.
Wednesday, January 9 2 & 7:30 pm
$12
California Academy of Sciences

Skies of Winter
Darryl Stanford
Join Stanford for another popular seasonal star-watching lecture and unravel the mysteries of the winter constellations. Learn to locate the North Star, find the Flying Horse and the Ethiopian Queen, and discover how to distinguish between a planet and a star. Enjoy the mythology of the skies-all in the comfort of Morrison Planetarium.
Friday, January 11, 18 & 25 7-9 pm
Must be 18 or older

Uses of Tules in Native California
Tules (Scirpus californicus) are bulrushes native to the freshwater wetlands of California. Indians from many tribes traditionally used tules to create a wide variety of practical items: food, clothing, shelter, transportation (boats), sleeping mats, rope, dolls, and baskets. This program offers a glimpse into these craft traditions, as artist Edward Willie, whose ancestry is Pomo, Wintou, Walaiki, and Paiute, demonstrates and discusses various uses of tules.
Saturday, January 19 12:30 - 2:30 pm
Free
California Academy of Sciences, Cowell Hall


"Eternal Inflation"

Dean Lecture Series
Dr. Alexander Vilenkin
"Inflation," in an astronomical context, is an epoch of accelerated expansion of the universe driven by the repulsive energy of a "false vacuum." Twenty years ago a theory of eternal inflation was suggested to explain some seemingly unnatural features of the universe. Dr. Alexander Vilekin, from the physics department of Tufts University, notes that the theory of inflation has dramatically changed the picture of the universe on very large scales. In his talk on "eternal inflation" he will present the theoretical analysis showing that inflation never ends completely in the entire universe. In some parts of the universe, like ours, inflation continues. Dr. Vilenkin argues that an inflating universe must have had a beginning, although it has no end.
Tuesday, January 29 7:30 pm
$3
California Academy of Sciences, Morrison Planetarium

Birding at Las Gallinas Wildlife Ponds
Birding Field Trip with Dan Murphy
The settling ponds, marshes, and uplands at Las Gallinas are excellent spots to view some of the Bay Area's wintering birds. Stroll along easily accessible levees, and observe a variety of ducks, waders, and shorebirds. Expect to see several species of hawks and many upland birds, passing the winter in this rich lowland-feeding zone. The walk is about two miles along flat land, but come prepared for extreme weather conditions, as the ponds are open to the elements.
Saturday, February 9 8 am-noon
$35; Academy members, $30
Must be 18 or older


- Kids: Places To Go -

Steinhart Aquarium
Come watch live sharks, alligators, penguins hundreds of fish and a living coral reef at the Steinhart Aquarium. The Steinhart houses over 600 varieties of aquatic life in 165 individual tanks. Open ocean fish swim around you in the fish roundabout. Fish roundabout feedings take place at 1:30 pm every day. Penguin feedings take place at 11:30 am and 4 pm each day.
California Academy of Sciences in Golden Gate Park
Open 365 days of the year

- Kids: Things To Do -

Nature Discovery
Each year the California Academy of Sciences offers children, families and adults more than 200 field trips, workshops and classes focusing on science and the natural world. Explore tide pools in Marin, discover birds in Golden Gate Park or learn how to draw and paint animals in Steinhart Aquarium. For more information visit www.calacademy.org/education.

Drawing and Painting in African Hall
Workshop with Jacqueline Ruben
Spend the evening with lions, zebras, and a giraffe! Learn to draw and paint Africa's exotic animals in a special after-hours class at the Academy. Once the crowds have departed, set up drawing stations amid the enchanting dioramas of African Hall. Using these spectacular displays as subjects, experiment with oil and soft pastel, watercolor and colored pencil to create a work of art. Open to families with children 7 to 12 years old.
Friday, January 25 5:30-8 pm
Adults, $30; children, $25
Academy members: adults, $25; children, $20
(Materials provided.)
California Academy of Sciences, African Hall

- Movie -

The God Squad and the Case of the Northern Spotted Owl
Documentary
Emily Hart has produced a number of award-winning documentary films primarily focusing on environmental issues and American history and culture. The documentary film, The God Squad, offers a behind-the-scenes look at the controversial Endangered Species Committee proceedings over the Northern spotted owl and 44 proposed timber sales in southwest Oregon. While the May 1992 proceeding focused on the owl and a limited number of timber sales, the controversy was a microcosm of a much larger debate concerning the fate of the Pacific Northwest's old growth forests and the Endangered Species Act.
Thursday, January 24 7:30 pm
California Academy of Sciences, Morrison Auditorium
$8 admission/ $5 members

 

 

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