Fire! Science & Safety

The exhibition Fire! Science & Safety invites guests to explore Casa del Fuego, Apartment 911 as a fire danger detective, seeking out fire and burn hazards to make their families, pets, and homes safer. Hands-on interactives give you a chance to explore the science of fire—safely—by creating “fire” out of different ingredients in our firepit, practice fire-fighting skills with a fire extinguisher, and figure out which appliances might blow a circuit if you use them together.

Working with the exhibit development team at the California Science Center, designers at Storyline Studio, and AV producers at MAD Systems, I helped develop the exhibit content and coordinated AV research, media acquisition, and implementation. In particular, I led the development of two exhibits: (1) an interactive fire pit about the fire triangle, and (2) a series of five short wildfire videos.

In the fire pit exhibit, guests use a touchscreen to try starting a “fire” in a faux fire pit to learn about the fire triangle. If they succeed, they can then try to extinguish it. I researched 400 combinations of fuel sources, heat sources, and extinguishing methods. Working with our AV producer, I also tested and debugged this interactive prior to installation.

In the wildfire exhibit, I produced a series of bilingual videos called “Why is California Burning?”. The videos have a total runtime of 10 minutes. These videos included Indigenous voices to expose our guests to additional perspectives on why California is burning with catastrophic wildfires seemingly every year now. I negotiated and acquired video footage from KCET/The Autry Museum of the American West with experts on the meaning and history of Indigenous burning (Chairman Ron Goode and Jared Dahl Aldern, Ph.D.), as well as actual footage of its practice from Sinead Santich. I acquired additional footage from stock houses and community partners like UCLA, NOAA, and CalFire. Working with technical advisors and our team at the Science Center, I wrote voiceover scripts, then supervised editing and execution of the final cuts for all videos.