smithsonian

The shark attacks that inspired JAWS

The shark attacks that inspired JAWS

“In the summer of 1916, panic struck the Jersey Shore,” reads the opening sentence of this Smithsonian magazine article. No, the panic was not caused by the arrival of overly tanned, puffed-hair and muscular visitors, but instead by shark attacks in the waters off the shore. During that summer, a shark attacked five victims. In an interview with George Burgess, a shark-attack expert in charge of the International Shark Attack File at the Florida Museum of Natural History (sounds like a role for Nicolas Cage), he explains that when these attacks happened people thought a sea turtle was responsible before the press ultimately identified it as a great white.

Look! It's a bird…it's a plane…it's Discovery!

Look! It's a bird…it's a plane…it's Discovery!

Yesterday the mainstream media, bloggers, photographers, Twitterers such as @Siouxsie212 who snapped the photo above (hashtag #SpotTheShuttle), and DC-area residents all craned their necks upward and pointed their Instagram-ready smartphones and DSLRs up into the sky to capture the space shuttle Discovery heading to its retirement home at the Smithsonian.

Smithsonian locked in art controversy

Smithsonian locked in art controversy

The two works in question, the first by Wojnarowicz and the second by Bronson. Following the National Portrait Gallery’s controversial removal of David Wojnarowicz’s video from their “Hide/Seek” exhibition, artist AA Bronson requested his photograph be removed from the show as well. After Wojnarowicz’s video of ants crawling over a crucifix incited outrage in the…

Hyperbolic crochet coral reef comes to the Smithsonian

Hyperbolic crochet coral reef comes to the Smithsonian

According to the Smithsonian Institution, coral reefs have been called “the rainforests of the sea” for the incredible biodiversity they support. Also like their terrestrial counterparts, reefs are under constant attack from a variety of human impacts: from commercial fishing and diving to higher, more acidic oceans caused by climate change.

Sustainable design: Nature Conservancy launches Design for a Living World

Sustainable design: Nature Conservancy launches Design for a Living World

Uttering the phrase “green design” can evoke images of mud-plastered huts and clothes that just scream “itchy”… all bathed in a faint whiff of patchouli. A new project from the Nature Conservancy attempts to banish such sensations, and demonstrate that beauty and function can exist hand-in-hand with sustainability.