Humania – NEMO Science Museum
When you walk through a tunnel into Humania, you hear questions about yourself. They make you think: who or what am I? When you leave the tunnel you are standing in front of an 8.5-meter-high work of art of a skeleton doing a handstand. The exhibition titles in neon letters ‘I was’, ‘I am’ and ‘I will become’ beckon you to go and explore. The tunnel acts as a transition space where you can briefly reset from previous impressions. As in a magnetic field, all the parts direct you towards the centre: the visitor literally takes center stage upon entering.
Rather than faking reality, we wanted to bring that reality into the exhibition. This way you don’t see models in the photographs, but real people telling you their personal stories. For example meet life-size scientists who tell you how they approach their research – that’s how science becomes personal.
The minimal structures of grey steel and glass place the spotlight solely on the subject: you. With this open set-up, you view other visitors as part of the narrative and, in turn, you are also observed. In the amphitheater you can do self-tests and will literally sit on a stage. You constantly compare yourself with the other visitors and with the world around you. In this way you discover differences and similarities with others and get to know yourself better.
NEMO Science Museum
Oosterdok 2, Amsterdam
Photos: Kossmanndejong, Tara Fallaux & NEMO, Digidaan