This Is Not Your Average Art Book.
Brought to you by the Exploratorium's Tinkering Studio, The Art of Tinkering is an unprecedented celebration of what it means to tinker: to take things apart, explore tools and materials, and build wondrous, wild art that’s part science and part technology. Join 150+ makers as they share the stories behind their beautiful and bold work and use this book to do some tinkering yourself. We do mean “use this book” in a literal sense… you won’t even be able to reach the first page before using it.
The Art of Tinkering is a collection of exhibits, artwork, and projects that celebrate a whole new way to learn, in which people create their own knowledge through making and doing, working with readily available materials, getting their hands dirty, collaborating with others, problem-solving in the most fun sense of the word, and, yes, oftentimes failing and bouncing back from getting stuck.
Each artist featured in The Art of Tinkering goes through this process, and lovingly shares the backstory behind their own work so that readers can feel invited to join in on the whimsy. Whether it’s sharing their favorite tools (who knew toenail clippers could be so handy?) or offering a glimpse of their workspaces (you’d be amazed how many electronics tools you can pack into one pantry!), the stories, lessons, and tips in The Art of Tinkering offer a fascinating portrait of today’s maker scene.
Learn from greats like Scott Weaver, Arthur Ganson, Moxie, Tim Hunkin, AnnMarie Thomas, Ranjit Bhatnajar and Jie Qi.
About the Author
As codirectors of the Tinkering Studio, Karen Wilkinson and Mike Petrich see their roles at the Exploratorium as advocates for making as a way of knowing. They believe deeply in studio pedagogy and the ability that we all have to think with our hands, and are curious about how people develop personal and unique understandings of the world for themselves. As undergraduates, both attended the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, where Mike studied fine arts, filmmaking, and photography and Karen focused on environmental design.
Before coming to the Exploratorium, they pursued graduate studies in education and technology at Harvard and MIT. Today, after more than twenty years working as a team to integrate science, art, and technology into curriculum for both in-school and out-of-school learning environments, they foster and facilitate informal learning spaces for making and tinkering, offering people a chance to connect to their own learning in a deeply personal way. They’ve worked with audiences as diverse as museum visitors, primary school students, Tibetan monks, prison inmates, and graduate school researchers, and are both happy to call the Tinkering Studio home, where they are able to work with a delightfully quirky group of artists, educators, and innovators.
The Exploratorium—San Francisco’s renowned museum of science, art, and human perception—is dedicated to changing the way the world learns. Within the Exploratorium, the Tinkering Studio is a workshop in which science and technology become powerful tools for personal expression, and where visitors gather to participate in hands-on, mind-expanding activities and demonstrations.
"The book showcases 150+ makers working at the intersection of art, science and technology and captures that infectious maker spirit I so deeply love. Inside you'll not only find profiles of important makers but also how you can start tinkering around and explore making things from soft circuits, wire art, puppets, mark-making machines, fused fashion and more."
"If you know someone who loves making or Maker Faire or the Exploratorium or just the delightful little moments of everyday life, make sure this book makes it into their hands. And don’t forget to top your gift with an LED and a 9v battery, so that your happy recipient can tinker right away with the conductive ink on the cover."
— Make Magazine
"What an incredible book! At every page, the "making" parts of my brain are activated and I'm compelled into the shop to try versions of the suggested projects. I wish, WISH that this book existed when I was young. Hell, I wish I had it when my kids were younger. A must-read for every maker!"
— Adam Savage, "Mythbusters"
"I absolutely fell in love with all the geniuses in the Tinkering Studio. I may contract some of the them to build me a home inside the museum so I can I live there and learn forever!"
— Reggie Watts, comedian