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Artist as Innovator: Visions of a Floating City

Great artists shape new realities by challenging conventional world views and pushing society to see possibility in unlikely places. That paradigm springs to life on top of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where Argentinian-born artist Tomás Saraceno debuts his new utopian installation, Cloud Cities, a towering constellation of interconnected pods that draws its inspiration from the geometry of bubbles, the flight of balloons, the patterns of the cosmos and the intricacies of spider webs. Navigate your way through the structure’s maze of mirrors and webs before joining the artist and renowned scientists and architects for a conversation that brings the intersection of science and art to the foreground, and explores radical new habitats for 21st-century living.

Presented in collaboration with The Metropolitan Museum of Art.


Julie BursteinAuthor, Radio Producer

Julie Burstein is a Peabody Award-winning radio producer, best-selling author, and public speaker who has spent her working life in conversation with highly creative people. She is the co-author of Spark: How Creativity Works.

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Tomás SaracenoInstallation Artist

Tomás Saraceno’s work defies traditional notions of space, time, gravity, consciousness and perception through architectural, social and communitarian means that are utopian and participatory. His installations blend the boundary between sky and the earth, creating the sensation of flight.

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Peter JägerArachnologist

Renowned arachnologist Peter Jäger has discovered more than 200 species of spiders in the last decade, including a rare species in Malaysia that he named Heteropoda davidbowie after the legendary British rocker to raise awareness of endangered spiders and their threatened tropical habitats.

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Mario LivioAstrophysicist, Author

Dr. Mario Livio is an astrophysicist, a best-selling author, and a popular speaker. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He has published more than 400 scientific papers on topics ranging from Dark Energy and cosmology to black holes and extrasolar planets.

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Christopher McKayAstrobiologist

Chris McKay is a research scientist with the NASA Ames Research Center. His current research focuses on the evolution of the solar system and the origin of life. He is also actively involved in planning for future Mars missions including human exploration.

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Mark WigleyArchitect

Mark Wigley is a leading architectural theorist and critic and the dean of Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation. The accomplished scholar and design teacher has written extensively on the theory and practice of architecture.

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