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Photo courtesy of the Brooklyn Public Library
Photo courtesy of the Brooklyn Public Library
The new vending machine-sized museum.

It looks like big things truly do come in small packages.

The Brooklyn Public Library on Friday, November 10 introduced a new, compact science museum on the first floor of its Central Library (10 Grand Army Plaza), making it the first in the country to do so. The vending-machine sized museum focuses on the mollusk, a slimy invertebrate which survives in every habitat on earth.

In spite of its size, the exhibit features 15 different displays, including a holographic aquarium, three miniature movie theatres and the first-ever 3D print of an octopus brain.

“We are excited to be working with MICRO to bring innovative science and education programming to BPL,” said Christine Schonhart, assistant director of the Central Library. “The exhibits complement our own STEM programming and commitment to innovation – and it has been fun to watch people discover the museum and start discussions about the mollusks and science.”

The world’s smallest mollusk museum was designed by a team of storytellers, designers and scientists at MICRO, a non-profit group dedicated to building miniature museums.

It was honored with the New Media Award at the 2017 Tribeca Film Institute.

“Our mission is to bring science into new and unexpected places,” said Amanda Schochet, computational ecologist and co-founder of MICRO. “The BPL is wonderful, at the center of so many communities in Brooklyn. It’s not where you’d normally think to go visit octopuses and snails. But now you can! Launching a Smallest Mollusk Museum in the library system here will be the catalyst for thousands of conversations between strangers about science over the next year.”

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