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There’s nothing like firsthand experience with phenomenon to ignite a child’s imagination, and it’s difficult to accept that summer vacation, at least for the kids, is almost over. In a few weeks, kids across South Florida head back to school to learn about math, history, art and science—at least that’s what we hope. But, what they won’t learn about in school, which they should, is the beauty of magic and the wondrous life of bubbles.

"Bubbles" by Santiago Betancur Z

“Bubbles” by Santiago Betancur Z

Presented by Colombian photographer and artist Santiago Betancur Z, whom I interviewed in 2012 for Knight Arts, “Bubbles” opens at the Miami Science Museum on August 1 and runs through December 1. Betancur Z spent the last 11 years experimenting with bubbles by photographing and video-recording them in his studio. Using water and soap, Betancur Z exposed bubbles to light and captured their mystical essence, which teaches the viewer something concrete and real about the universe—that it is extraordinarily complex and beautiful.

Bentancur Z discovered that not only is every bubble unique, but that each bubble we encounter reveals a new dimension to this seemingly simple “creature.” When exposed to light and capture by Bentancur Z’s lens, bubbles refract and morph into elegant, and often misshapen, spheres of magic that mimic some of the celestial phenomena, such as nebulae, that form galaxies.

The duration of exhibition will feature photographs and video. However, on opening day, Bentancur Z will conduct a live performance and demonstration from 6:30-9 p.m. By taking us into the microcosmic world of bubbles, Bentancur Z shows us that sometimes we have to look at the smalls things in life, the small wonders we often overlook and take for granted, to find big beauty in the world.

“Bubbles” runs from August 1-December 1. Opening night is August 1st from 6:30-9 p.m. Opening night attendance is included in the price of admission to the museum that day. The Miami Science Museum is located at 3280 South Miami Ave., Miami; 305-646-4200; www.miamisci.org.

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