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It'll be all Wrong! on the night as Wellcome Collection admits mistakes

28 June 2013


28 June
Late night event, Friday 5 July, 19.00 - 23.00

Wellcome Collection is getting off on the wrong foot with an all building spectacular celebrating human failures, fallacies and faults. 'Wrong!' brings together scientists, magicians, film-makers and performers for an evening of errors. Leave your right-mindedness at the door and enter a world led astray, where pleasures are irrational and self-deception is smiled upon. We all make mistakes, and 'Wrong!' gives us the right to enjoy them.

Slapstick and nonsense are on the bill with a carnival of fools and the rare chance to discover your inner idiot in a clowning master class with director John Wright. Share your shame by telling us your worst mistakes, and hear others' in our error confessional. Close up magicians will be in the building with sleights of minds and hands and psychologist and illusionist Gustav Kuhn will uncover the secrets of how our brains are fooled by their trickery.

Talks take in neuroscientist Benedetto De Martino on the upsides of irrational thinking, and eyewitness expert Amina Memon explaining how our memory deceives us with the help of an experiment we'll be running during the evening. Neuroscientist Kris de Meyer and film-maker Sheila Marshall will be discussing and screening clips from their upcoming documentary Right Between Your Ears which records the experience of feeling right but being wrong, following people in the USA convinced the world would end on 21 May 2011 and their response to dashed certainty.

The Wrongness Cabaret gathers a roll call of comedians, scientists, storytellers and magicians to fawn on failure and delight in disaster, whilst the Wellcome Library will be taken over by games designed to reward creative error in the Wrongness Championships. From the reverse sketching of Anti-Descriptionary to genetic code Chinese whispers, you can challenge friends, try to influence others in making mistakes or be wrong against the clock.

Around the galleries there will be interactive tests which reveal conviction in the face of confounding evidence, courtesy of Neil Garrett and colleagues from UCL's Affective Brain Lab, disarming perception illusions which make strangers of our brains and bodies, and the Unbelievable Truth of Medical History which challenges us to separate breakthrough from blunder in a quick-fire quiz about disproved cures and theories.

A bar will be open (staff will forgive requests for drinks mistaken not stirred) and there'll be nothing to fault with the delicious food served at the Peyton and Byrne cafe. Blackwell's bookshop will provide plenty of material to challenge what you thought you knew to be true. Sometimes discovering you're wrong is just the beginning of a new adventure.

Sarah Punshon, curator of 'Wrong!' says: "I hope visitors to will enjoy the chance to cut loose and enjoy being wrong in the company of brilliant speakers, performers and designers. It's been great fun filling Wellcome Collection with deliberate mistakes and creating an evening that will offer freedom from rightness."

Ken Arnold, Head of Public Programmes at Wellcome Collection says: "We all spend much of our lives being mistaken and getting led astray in ways we often try to forget. For one evening, 'Wrong!' side-steps our eagerness to be correct, and instead celebrates our fallibility - finding out a little more about why we&rsquo re so easily and frequently fooled - and suggests that, sometimes, it's right to be wrong."

'Wrong!' is a free event on Friday 5 July. Drop in any time from 19.00 to 23.00.

Tickets for talks will be available from Wellcome Collection on the night of the event only.


Media Contact

Tim Morley
Senior Media Officer
T 020 7611 8612
E t.morley@wellcome.ac.uk


Notes to Editors

Wellcome Collection is the free visitor destination for the incurably curious. Located at 183 Euston Road, London, Wellcome Collection explores the connections between medicine, life and art in the past, present and future. The building comprises three gallery spaces, a public events programme, the Wellcome Library, a café , a bookshop, conference facilities and a members' club. Wellcome Collection is growing. A £ 17.5million development will deliver new galleries and spaces in late Summer 2014. Find out more.

Wellcome Collection is part of the Wellcome Trust, a global charitable foundation dedicated to achieving extraordinary improvements in human and animal health. It supports the brightest minds in biomedical research and the medical humanities. The Trust's breadth of support includes public engagement, education and the application of research to improve health. It is independent of both political and commercial interests.

Sarah Punshon, guest curator, is a freelance theatre maker. She recently created an innovative programme of arts-science events for families at the Natural History Museum, and is currently developing a project for Festival of the North East. http://www.sarahpunshon.co.uk/


'Wrong!' contributors:

Dr Elena Azañón, Research Fellow, Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, UCL.

Daniel Bye, theatre maker, director and performer.

Dr Sarah Chaney, Research Associate, UCL Centre for the History of Psychological Disciplines.

Lucy Crimmens, designer and theatre maker.

Dr Benedetto De Martino, Senior Research Associate in Cognitive Neuroscience, UCL.

Sally Frampton, doctoral student, Centre for the History of Medicine, UCL.

Neil Garrett and Caroline Charpentier, doctoral students, Faculty of Brain Sciences and Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, UCL.

Lee Hathaway and Gareth Kulyani, magicians, courtesy of A Magic Place Ltd.

Dr Gustav Kuhn, Senior Lecturer, Department of Psychology, Goldsmiths, University of London.

Nish Kumar, stand-up comedian.

Dr Matthew Longo, Senior Lecturer, Department of Psychological Sciences, Birkbeck, University of London.

Dr Anna Maerker, Senior Lecturer in History of Medicine, King's College London.

Sheila Marshall, independent film maker.

Professor Amina Memon, Francesca Ainsworth, Jess Darby, Samantha Chan and Federica Picariello, psychologists from Royal Holloway, University of London.

Dr Kris De Meyer, film maker and neuroscientist, King's College London.

Matthew Paskins, historian of science and storyteller.

Professor Sophie Scott, Wellcome Trust Senior Fellow at the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, UCL.

Jo Stephenson, ukulele-playing comedy songwriter and performer.

Dr Ana Tajadura, Dr Max-Philipp Stenner, Dr Flavia Cardini and Dr Elisa Ferré , neuroscientists from UCL and Royal Holloway.

John Wright, director, author and teacher of theatre.

Our playful games designers: Gareth Briggs, Iván González, Hannah Nicklin, Sophie Sampson and Simon Watt.

Actors and clown-musicians: Hannah Boyde, Seiriol Davies, Hannah Emanuel, Lucy Ellinson, Edward Jaspers, Ben Revell, Susie Riddell, and Paschale Straiton.