King’s College London has outlined its intention to construct an innovative venue for science and art collaboration in London Bridge following two capital funding awards totalling £7 million.
The acclaimed London-based University intends to extend its Guy’s Campus, one of the world’s leading facilities for biomedical research, to include a Science Gallery, scheduled to open this year 2015, after recently receiving confirmation of funding of £3 million from the Wellcome Trust and £4 million from Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity towards their funding target of £12 million for the project.
Encouraging the spawn collaborations between the Sciences and the Arts, the Science Gallery aims to generate and host a range of pioneering events, exhibitions and performances emphasising a dialogue between the two seemingly contrasting areas of investigation, fusing science and technology with art and design, in an inspiring new approach to considering the two fields.
The Science Gallery at King’s College London aims too function as a flagship project for cultural appreciation and responsiveness at the University under the leadership of Deborah Bull, Director of Cultural Partnerships at King’s College London and previously Creative Director of London’s Royal Opera House.
“Culture has a key role to play in driving innovation across the College, offering new opportunities to academics, researchers and students, widening participation and engaging a broad and more diverse public with King’s” comments Deborah Bull. She believes that the new Science Gallery “may bring together art and science in new and innovative ways, stimulating alternative perspectives and engaging a younger audience with science, health and culture.”
Neuroscientist Dr Daniel Glaser has been appointed as Director of Science Gallery at King’s, and is equally appreciated to receive financial support for the new project, commenting, “It is incredibly exciting to be able to share our plans to open the nation’s leading venue for science and art collaboration. We hope that the changing locally-driven programme, which will bring science, technology and health into dialogue with the arts and design, will see visitors return regularly for free to enjoy the space and the experience.”
The intention is to expand the project through the involvement of other leading universities located within urban centres worldwide, seeing the Science Gallery at King’s College London becoming part of a Global Science Gallery Network of eight similar venues by 2020.
Modelled upon Science Gallery Dublin which opened in 2008 and is already amongst the top ten free cultural attractions in Ireland, the Science Gallery at King’s College London will be free to visit with a focus upon engaging young people to experiment with collaborations between science and art, stimulating artists, researchers and visitors to experience the Sciences through the lens of culture.
Michael John Gorman, CEO of Science Gallery International, comments, “The establishment of Science Gallery at King’s College London is a clear signal of the value this world-leading university places on a creative approach to public engagement and innovation within science, health and the arts.”
Where might funding in other areas of science improve the inquisitive nature exploration?