Celebrate Bloomington’s Bicentennial at WonderLab during WonderLab’s After Dark: Art in Bloom. Explore Bloomington’s artists and learn about the connection art has to the world of science.  This dichotomy inspired WonderLab Museum Educator, Jared Katz in his vision for the upcoming WonderLab 21+ event – After Dark: Art in Bloom, Saturday, August 25 from 6 to 9 p.m.

“Bloomington has a long and rich history of engaging with different art forms, and WonderLab wants to honor that history especially during the bicentennial,” said Katz. “Bloomington has a wealth of local artists in a variety of mediums as well as a large number of renowned scientists. It’s amazing that both of these fields thrive in Bloomington, and I believe this happens, in large part, because of each other.”

For this unique celebration WonderLab is fusing the passions of art and science into a single, spectacular evening event. Visitors are invited to explore unique aspects of the Bloomington science and art scenes and celebrate the ways in which these creative industries intersect.

Visitors, scientists and artists alike will find something to inspire their passions at After Dark: Art in Bloom. Live musical performances are scheduled. Paramus, a cover band featuring hits from the 1990s emo group Paramour, will be rocking out in the gallery. A performance of classical selections performed by a traditional quartet with musicians from the Indiana University Jacob’s School of Music is scheduled to take place in the WonderGarden (weather permitting).

“Music is clearly embedded throughout the human experience,” said Katz. “And the Bloomington musical experience is extremely varied and important. We scheduled very different groups to celebrate a  broad spectrum of musical styles. Weather permitting we plan to layer this experience so visitors can move between and explore the two genres.”

Also, at the event: Distinguished Professor Roger Hangarter’s Emmy-award winning, time-lapse photography that captures the beauty of local Bloomington insects and plants, and explores cellular biology. By photographing the growing processes, development and metamorphosis of plants and animals through time-lapses, Hangarter works to create a deeper understanding and connection to the previously unnoticed world. Hangarter’s Emmy-winning time-lapses are featured in 21 museums nationwide.

“Different approaches and mediums bring science messages to a broader group,” said Katz.  “Art creates understanding about complex topics.”

Bloomington based, representational painter Meg Lagodski will unveil a number of large scale representational paintings of the abandoned quarries common to the area.  In tandem with a Polly Root Sturgeon, Education Outreach Coordinator with the Indiana Geological & Water  Survey, will talk about the science of limestone formations. According to Katz, both art and science reveal the mystery, majesty and emotion of southern Indiana’s geography.

Informatics Department at Indiana University’s interactive art exhibit made out of robots. Their art installation of interactive robots illustrating data flow and input will be on display at the event. “The robots are also very fun to play with,” said Katz.

The full event line-up includes a variety of celebrated local artists and scientists with activities across the spectrum. Theater arts and make-up will be presented by the John Waldron Arts Center. Kinetic movement and dance will be explored through Couples Swing Dance Lessons taught by nationally renowned dance instructor, Mary Hoedeman Coniaris. Delve into the art of literature and discuss the written word with local, nationally known authors Scott Russell Sanders, Ian Woollen, and James Thom.

As always ticket holders will have complete access to all of WonderLab’s hands-on exhibits as well as special event activities and experiments and treats from new Bloomington eatery: The Hive.  Drinks from the Bloomington Brewing Company, Friendly Beasts and Oddball Fermentables will be available for purchase.

“Both artists and scientists really care about finding ways to better understand the world and represent the world in different ways,” said Katz. “Collaborations between those two fields creates more ways to present this information – to connect what these innovators find fascinating and to share it with others.”

The 2018 WonderLab After Dark Series is sponsored by Griffin Realty and Mira Salon & Spa. WonderLab is a proud member of the Bloomington community and supporter of the Bloomington Bicentennial. Advance tickets for WonderLab After Dark: Art in Bloom can be purchased on-line at $15 for members, $18 for non-members. Day of event tickets can be purchased for $20 at the door. Ticket price includes museum admission, shows, activities and food.

To learn more about WonderLab After Dark: Art in Bloom, visit WonderLab Science Museum’s Facebook page. For more information about WonderLab’s hands-on, educational adult programs, follow @WonderLab on Twitter and Instagram, and follow @museumeduc8or on Twitter.