Exhibitions

Eli Whitney Museum

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2007 Exhibition

Gilbert the Competitor

Gilbert the Competitor

Gilbert's experience in the fourth Olympics is a story of sport, Yale, educational trends, social movements, the Olympics as an institution, politics, and a bold young man who loved to compete.

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The 13th Leonardo Challenge

Playing Hands

Leonardo and the printing press were born in the same year. The first transformation of that revolutionary communications technology was, of course, games. Playing cards, made uniform and inexpensive by Gutenberg's press, spoke a universal, popular language.

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The 12th Leonardo Challenge

Rein of Invention

Chain is as ancient as Hepaestus, the artisan god of the forge. It is an essential tool of the blacksmith’s art. With rings and hooks of chain, a blacksmith tethers the world. Leonardo draws chains as he dissects the anatomy of invention.

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2005 Exhibition

Champion of Champions

Gilbert and shepherd

Alfred Gilbert was born in 1884 in Salem, Oregon. About the same time, in Western Germany, Max von Stephanitz began to standardize a breed of yellow and grey wolf-like working dog that would become the German Shepherd. It became an icon of a simpler, purer time.

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The 11th Leonardo Challenge

Remarkable Invention

Mark McCarthy

Just as the printing press spread reading across Renaissance Europe,the pencil spread writing. Wood or metal or paper supported a carbon and clay stylus ever ready to mark, cipher, or draw.

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The Gilbert Project

Eye Contact

Gilbert Microscope Ad

A. C. Gilbert graduated from Yale’s Sheffield Scientific School in 1909. Gilbert trained to be a physician just as modern scientific medicine... and the microscope... displaced 19th century practical medicine. Gilbert added microscope kits to his popular lines of Erector and Chemistry sets in 1934.

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The 10th Leonardo Challenge

Serving Creativity

Tools extend the powers of the hand. Tools expand the world to be touched. The spoon was, at first, literally, a splint of wood improvised to collect for sipping the broth of boiled beast. Which came first: the soup (a word also derived from the sound of sipping) or the spoon?

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The 9th Leonardo Challenge

Fastenation

Use buttons and laces to construct or adorn. or adorn and construct buttons and laces. Transform, transcribe, transfigure, transpose. Unbutton your imagination. Lace your work with wit, wisdom or wonder.

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The 8th Leonardo Challenge

Leonardo's Cradle

Leonardo reveled in invention…the creations of the human hand that manipulate, manage, magnify and mirror nature. Nature usurped classical geometry as the ruler of Leonardo’s mind. And yet Leonardo connected invention to nature as simply and precisely as the concave of the tee embraces the curve of the sphere.

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The 7th Leonardo Challenge

Turns of Mind

Nature turns wheels with muscle, wind and water in dutiful simplicity. Leonardo's mind reconstructs that movement. He collects and contrives twists and turns to compose an infinite choreography: sometimes a dull march, sometimes a graceful waltz, sometimes a jazzy jitterbug.

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The 6th Leonardo Challenge

Checkers

Draughts are an ancient diversion. Pharaohs played. Like games evolved in China, India, Turkey and Africa. A book on checkers was printed when books were first printed in Leonardo’s epoch.

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The 5th Leonardo Challenge

Arteries

Arteries work 1

Leonardo sees through surface. He sees the channels, conduits, and capillaries that structure and animate the flower, the insect, the city the body, the earth. Leonardo sees a universal web of connections.

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