GAMBIER — The monsters and magical creatures of the Harry Potter saga are tethered to reality in the traveling exhibition “Harry Potter’s World: Renaissance Science, Magic, and Medicine,” now on display at the Olin Library.
The exhibition, developed by the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, continues at the library through April 21. Several Harry Potter-related events, touching on medieval manuscripts, star-gazing, and trivia, are companions to the exhibition.
“The exhibition ties the roots of Renaissance science, mathematics and medicine to things in the Harry Potter books,” said Lynn Manner, Library Services manager of special collections. “It’s interesting. We know there are many huge Harry Potter fans here. Huge fans.”
Matthew Lasnoski ’12 of Sandusky, is an instructional technologist at the library and has been an avid fan of the books, even as he has “grown up from that stage.” The exhibition, he said, helps him appreciate “Harry Potter and the real-life facts that went into making the stories so vividly realistic and accessible.” The exhibition, presented on six 7-foot banners, examines the magic in the Harry Potter books in the context of alchemy, astrology, and natural philosophy prominent in the 15th and 16th centuries. Ethical questions are also explored. The books were introduced by author J.K. Rowling in 1997. “I think the exhibit allows for the pop culture and fiction around Harry Potter’s story to come to life,” Lasnoski said.
The public is encouraged to visit the free exhibition. To learn more about it, call 740-427-5191. Events related to the exhibition include:
Saturday, 3 p.m.; “Potions Class: Part the First,” a demonstration of how to make beer with pre-modern techniques and ingredients, at the Brown Family Environmental Center, 9781 Laymon Rd. Brewers include James S. Keller, associate professor of chemistry; Bruce L. Hardy, associate professor of anthropology; and instructional technology Jason B. Bennett. March 31 is the rain date.
March 29, 10 p.m.; “Harry Potter Trivia Night,” at the Peirce Hall Pub, 201 College-Park St. Teams of five will compete for prizes. The first 30 people who arrive will receive a coupon for a free Nite Bites panini. March 30; Harry Potter Day, with events being planned.
April 6, 5 p.m.; “Herbology: Magical, Edible, and Medicinal Herbs” is a walk guided by John Hickenbottom at the Brown Family Environment Center. April 13 is the rain date.
April 13, 9 p.m.; “Star Talk,” by Timothy B. Shutt, professor of humanities. If the skies are cloudy, the talk will be rescheduled for April 20.
April 21, 8 p.m.; “Potions: Part the Second” concludes the demonstration about beer-making during the Renaissance, with a brewer’s talk and a tasting at the Peirce Hall Pub. Those twenty-one or older are asked to bring proof of age in order to taste the beer. Nonalcoholic butterbeer will also be available.
Published on March 22, 2012