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The Randall Museum Gets a Facelift

The Randall Museum's New Facelift

Windswept, 2011
Photo courtesy of the artist Charles Sowers.
Commissioned for Randall Museum by the San Francisco Arts Commission.

Exploratorium artist and exhibit developer (and featured artist at SFO's T2) Charles Sowers gives Corona Heights' Randall Museum a much-needed makeover. The 75-year-old art and sciences institution has been teaching children for decades, but there's no question that the design of its exterior was in need of some serious TLC.

In a project facilitated by the San Francisco Arts Commission, Sowers has extended the museum's learning experience to the building's facade with the installation of Windswept. Made up of 500 freely-rotating directional arrows, the kinetic piece demonstrates how wind can be harvested as a sustainable energy source.

Inspired by the wind direction indicators found on sailboats, the arrows act as data points indicating air flow patterns that impact the museum. "I'm generally interested in creating instrumentation that allows us insight into normally invisible or unnoticed phenomena," says Sowers.

If you find yourself scratching your head trying to figure this out (like me), check out the public dedication ceremony on Feb. 4, after which Sowers leads a talk that will reveal the installation in laymen's terms.

10 a.m., Sat. 2/4, public dedication ceremony followed by artist talk at 10:30 a.m.