The mission of the Institute For Figuring
is to contribute to the public understanding
of scientific and mathematical themes through innovative programming that includes
exhibitions, lectures, workshops,
and participatory, community based projects. The IFF is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
in the Chinatown district of Los Angeles, the IFF’s venue functions both as an exhibition space and as a “play tank” for developing new methods of creative engagement with topics ranging from geometry and topology, to physics, computation, and biological form.
Founded in 2003, the IFF has developed exhibits and programs for museums, galleries, colleges, and community groups around the world.
We have worked with: the Andy Warhol Museum (Pittsburgh), The Hayward (London), the Science Gallery (Dublin), the New Children’s Museum (San Diego), Art Center College of Design (Pasadena), the Museum of Jurassic Technology (Los Angeles), and the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History.
The Institute’s Crochet Coral Reef is now one of the largest science + art
projects in the world.
At the core of the IFF’s work is the concept of material play.
We believe that ideas usually presented
in abstract terms can often be embodied in physical activities that engage audiences via kindergarten-like practices. Through activities
such as cutting and folding paper, we affirm that the hands and eyes can serve as guides to developing
the human mind. By inviting our audience to literally play
with ideas, the IFF offers a new, hands-on approach to public science education that is at once intellectually rigorous, pedagogically rich, and aesthetically aware.