Arts & Entertainment

Must-See Arts & Culture: Winter 2014–2015

by staff, 11/18/2014

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  • Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum
    After more than three years of renovations, the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum is set to reopen on December 12—and the mansion that houses the institution (Andrew Carnegie's onetime home) has never looked better. The expanded museum has 60% more gallery space than before, and four floors instead of its previous three dedicated to exhibitions. Cooper Hewitt welcomes back the public with the exhibition Tools: Extending Our Reach, which covers the history of human tool use from prehistoric cutters to current wonders like the iPhone and pill cameras. In terms of new features, interactive pens allow visitors to "collect" objects they've seen using RFID technology, and large tables with high-definition touchscreens offer visitors the chance to read the info on the pen and make their own design tweaks to the objects; when museum goers arrive home, they'll be able to access online a rundown of all they've seen and done on their visit. A "sketchbot" can take a photograph of visitors and trace it in sand—we anticipate the technology making it into a fair number of Facebook profile photos. Another bonus: the museum's garden will be open to the general public with or without admission, as will its café.

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