Science Gallery to expand to eight cities worldwide
Dublin initiative receives €1.8m from Wellcome Trust to support Trinity partnership
Artist Helen Pynor installing work as part of the Oscillator exhibition at the Science Gallery, Dublin, earlier this year. Photographer: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times
The Science Gallery is to establish eight galleries worldwide by 2020, building on the innovative model of public engagement developed by the Science Gallery in Dublin.
Galleries are planned for New York, Singapore, Bangalore, Moscow and London. King’s College London is in the process of committing to an agreement to develop a Science Gallery at a location in the London Bridge quarter which will be developed under the leadership of Deborah Bull, who was previously creative director of London’s Royal Opera House.
The Science Gallery at Trinity College Dublin, which celebrates its fifth anniversary this week, has also received €.1.8 million in funding from the Wellcome Trust to support a partnership with the Trinity Biomedical Sciences Institute (TBSI) over the next five years.
Director and founder, Michael John Gorman said the gallery in Dublin has attracted 1.3 million visitors since it opened in 2008.
“We initially thought we would get 50,000 visitors a year but last year we had 300,000,” he said. “The gallery was a new model of engaging the public with science and research and connecting them with the arts which hadn’t been done anywhere in the world before.”
The team at the Science Gallery believe in the theory of STEAM, linking the arts and design to science, technology and maths.
Mr Gorman said the visiting figures are a testament to the popularity of science and technology in Ireland. At the core of the Science Gallery ethos is a belief that arts education is a key to creativity and that it spurs innovation.
“The key to its success is that nothing in the gallery is permanent or static. We constantly change events and exhibitions so that it gives people a reason to keep coming back.” Mr Gorman said that while there are advantages to being small in scale they are looking to expand the Science Gallery in Dublin over the next five years.