I’ve always loved this painting. Vertumnus looks serenely at the viewer, a slight smile making you think he knows something you’d like to. It’s a clever work of Mannerism, seamlessly weaving a complex array of perfectly rendered fruits and other plants into the portrait of a human face full of character. The portrait is of … More Art, Science and the Intersection of Knowledge
Last September, there was a brief flurry of activity over the idea of a program that can distinguish homosexual versus heterosexual faces, based on their online dating image (see this, for instance, from the BBC). It started shortly before a scientific article was published by Stanford’s Yilun Wang Michal Kosinski in the online journal Open … More What’s wrong with a gay facial recognition program
Last May 7, I had the pleasure of co-presenting a round-table discussion (called “Hot Topics”) as part of the International Council of Museum’s contribution to the American Alliance of Museums’ 2018 conference. Our hour-long round-table discussion was hosted by ICOM-US (International Council of Museums USA). Our group of ten was highly diverse, including designers, architects, … More Environmental Issues: Every Museum’s Responsibility
The rapid decline of the global environment is an inescapable fact. The Earth’s major oxygen sources, coral reefs and rain forests, are disappearing along with the species that live in them. Atmospheric carbon is rising precipitously and one in a hundred year storms are becoming the norm. As the planet warms and forests are removed … More In an age of humans, can the arts save the planet?
I’m just about to give a public lecture. It will be at Whanganui Regional Museum in a couple of days’ time. The talk is, with some modification, one that I delivered in Japan last month, as a guest of the National Museum of Nature and Science in Tsukuba. The topic of the gathering was the … More Make Way for the Anthropocene
For some reason, known only to my former website hosts, my blog has met an untimely demise. Frustrating, as it was the product of a lot of work and years of Saturday mornings’ writing. Gone are the posts about Paul the Octopus, ant mercenaries, the Fountain of Youth, carnivorous plants and vampire moths. Gone are the links to my … More Why am I here? Making do with what you’ve got.