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The biggest research event of Rīga Stradiņš University (RSU), RSU Research Week, marks the beginning of Open Science Month at the RSU Anatomy Museum. The exhibition Viewpoints: On Illusions, Perception and Why We See the World Differently will open on 30 March and run to 30 April. Optical illusions created by Italian scientist Baingio Pinna and Japanese scientist Akiyoshi Kitaoka will be on display, and guests will be able to attend popular science lectures and workshops on topics related to illusions, perception, and why we each see the world differently.

Open Science Month at the RSU Anatomy Museum was created in collaboration with perception and cognitive science researcher Prof. Jurģis Šķilters, as well as visual perception researcher Prof. Pinna, one of the world’s leading researchers in the field.

‘This is the first time we organise Open Science Month at the museum, and we are hoping that it will become a tradition.

The goal is to make complex but interesting aspects of science understandable and to stimulate an interest in knowledge throughout society,’

says Head of the Anatomy Museum Ieva Lībiete. ‘Our perception does not reflect reality, but rather it is a subjective story created by our brains. That is why we will explore the fascinating world of illusion through the prism of science, trying to understand why we perceive the world so differently.’

‘Why illusions?

Illusions are extreme examples of what happens in any perceptual process and every moment when we come into contact with the outside world. Illusion research is therefore never a self-serving or caricatured illustration of how curiously perceptions can differ from the "real world".

This research helps us understand the transformational principles that reshape and organise sensory information as a result of perception,’ says Prof. Šķilters. 

Open Science Month and the exhibition on illusions will open on 30 March at 18:00 with the lecture Illusions and Paradoxes of the Mind by Prof. Pinna (in English). From 18:15 to 19:15, the RSU Anatomy Museum will host the butoh dance performance “Animantibus”, which will seek answers and ask questions about moving and being static, illusions and reality, the eternal and the transient, about the soul and the body.

Open Science Month will continue with several other events:

  • 5 April, 18:00 – lecture, Perceptual Illusions: What Are They and Why Are They Important in Science?
  • 19 April, 18:00 – lecture, Visualisation and Musification of EEG Brain Signals
  • 20 April, 18:00 – open lecture and discussion, The Diversity of Illusions
  • 22 April, 11:00 – workshop for children, Perception Laboratory

Read more

You must purchase a ticket to the museum to access the events.
Entrance for RSU students and staff is free of charge.

About RSU Research Week 2023

The biannual international RSU Research Week takes place from 27 March to 31 March. Five major conferences will take place during these five days. They focus on topics in health care and medicine as well as social sciences. Young and experienced researchers from Latvia and abroad will present 1,188 research papers during the week. The event will bring together researchers, students, cooperation partners, representatives of public administration and non-governmental organisations, including the diaspora, as well as the media. The event will take place in a hybrid format: both online and in person. 
Register here