23 articles
  • Eye Benches WCMA Arthur Evans

    6 Pieces of Art That Open Minds—and Get Stuff Done

     The modern artist David Hockney once said that “art has to move you and design does not, unless it’s a good design for a bus.” Such a polemic statement implies that there can be no blurring between pure art and usefulness. But an artwork’s function and the viewer’s interaction with it can be an integral […]
  • Extinction Marathon

    Art’s Biggest Wheel Turns Toward Science

    Hans-Ulrich ObristTwitter Hans-Ulrich Obrist seems to be everywhere—and it’s not much of an illusion. Widely regarded as the most influential figure in today’s art world, he’s worked with a who’s-who of major artists, from painter Gerhard Richter and sculptor Jeff Koons to performance artist Marina Abramovic and architect Rem Koolhass. From his perch as co-director of […]
  • The Abduction of Europa

    Finding the Perfect Amount of Creativity in Cars & Religion

    There is only a certain level of novelty that most people are willing to tolerate.
  • lucy walking skeleton

    Why Are You So Smart? Thank Your Mom & Your Difficult Birth

    Our inability to care for ourselves as babies is a key to the genius of our species.
  • feminized human skulls faces Cieri

    Before We Painted Like Picasso, We Had to Share Like Gandhi

    A comparison of the facial features of ancient modern humans (left) to more recent modern humans (right). Modern specimens have a less prominent brow ridge and a shorted upper face. Researchers suspect these changes were caused by a decrease of testosterone.Robert Cieri   Nautilus Members enjoy an ad-free experience. Log in or Join now . […]
  • Carstensen_HERO

    Robots Can’t Dance

    Why the singularity is greatly exaggerated.

  • Edgar Degas Two ironing women

    How “Meaning Withdrawal,” aka Boredom, Can Boost Creativity

    The power of mind-wandering.

  • Man in cocoon Vocal Vibrations Le Laboratoire

    Art + Science = Innovation

    The “chapel” area at the Vocal Vibrations exhibitAmy Kraft Upon entering the Vocal Vibrations installation at Le Laboratoire Cambridge, visitors are directed to a room called the chapel, where a haunting vocal composition plays out of nine speakers positioned around the room. After relaxing on a bench to focus on the music, people are led […]

  • Eta Carinae pre supernova

    How the Universe Made the Stuff That Made Us

     When our Universe was in its infancy, the only element it contained was hydrogen, the simplest one—not nearly enough by itself to create interesting things like planets and people. By the time things cooled sufficiently for the single proton in each hydrogen atom to pair with a negatively charged electron, about 92 percent of the […]

  • Hoffman_HERO-2

    How the Obits Became My Muse

    The unusual lives of a physicist and an aviator, in verse and song.

  • Chatterjee_HERO

    Can Science Tell Us What Beauty Is?

    Neuroscientist Anjan Chatterjee takes us into the neurology of creativity.