Exciting new hands-on science exhibition coming to Christchurch

Galileo Galilei lived from 1564-1642. Image: Getty
Galileo Galilei lived from 1564-1642. Image: Getty
A new interactive exhibition featuring experiments conducted by the father of modern science will open on Saturday at Canterbury Museum.

Visitors to the museum will be able to recreate some of the revolutionary experiments conducted by Renaissance scientist Galileo Galilei through interactive exhibits built by the Artisans of Florence.

The exhibition will allow visitors to experiment with scales, clocks, pendulums and telescopes to learn about the visionary scientist and astronomer's discoveries.

Called the father of modern science by Albert Einstein, Galileo was born in Pisa, Italy, in 1564.

In his lifetime he made a number of major contributions to physics and astronomy. He is perhaps best known for defending the then-radical idea that Earth and the planets move around the Sun.

Galileo’s interactive trajectory experiment. Photo: Artisans of Florence
Galileo’s interactive trajectory experiment. Photo: Artisans of Florence
In 1633, the Catholic Church, which maintained that the Sun and planets orbited Earth, found Galileo “vehemently suspect of heresy” and he was imprisoned in his home until his death in 1642.

Just as important as Galileo’s discoveries were the methods he used to conduct his experiments, which paved the way for modern science with their use of mathematics.

Visitors to Galileo: Scientist, Astronomer, Visionary can recreate many of these experiments using the hands-on exhibits.

The exhibition was designed by the Artisans of Florence, whose Da Vinci Mechanics exhibition drew more than 190,000 people to the museum between November 28, 2015, and February 8, 2016.

Said Canterbury Museum director Anthony Wright: “We are really pleased to bring this Artisans of Florence exhibition to Canterbury. Da Vinci Mechanics was extremely popular with local families and Galileo is a similar mix: A bit of history, a bit of science and a whole lot of fun.

“It has also given us our theme for our annual family favourite public programme, Night at the Museum: The Galileo Code, during the July school holidays. Dress as your favourite historical figure, bring a torch and try to crack Galileo’s code.”

  • Galileo: Science, Astronomer, Visionary is on at Canterbury Museum from June 19 to October 31. Night at the Museum: The Galileo Code is on July 13, 14 and 15 from 6-8pm.







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