IMAGINARY, Open Mathematics

The IMAGINARY journey began in 2007 at the Mathematisches Forschungsinstitut Oberwolfach. Nobody could foresee (or had the slightest clue) that it would grow to be a 13+ year journey of maths communication with an international, interactive, research-based, and open-source core!

IMAGINARY developed from a one-country traveling exhibition project (2007‑2008); to an expanding international exhibition (2009‑2012); to an open-source platform (2013); to creating school projects, a community a network, organizing competitions, conferences, workshops, teacher training, and experimenting with new technologies (2014‑2016); and to founding our organization (2017). We often wondered: what will IMAGINARY be or do next year? We continued creating and sharing our love for maths and people.

Today, more than a decade later, we are happy and proud to have invented an open-source infrastructure for maths exhibits and exhibitions, which is spreading globally. Through IMAGINARY, hundreds of mathematicians have become exhibition organizers and have engaged with several million visitors! With over 300 events in more than 50 countries, great exhibits in 30 languages, and a growing community of contributors, we can only thank you!

We are still wondering: What will be next? Thank you all for being part of this amazing journey.

Your IMAGINARY team.

Ecsite, the European network of science centers and museums, awarded IMAGINARY with the 2020 Mariano Gago award for Sustainable Success.

Stifterverband selected I AM A.I. for its Wirkung hoch 100 initiative, as one of Germany's 100 best ideas for the education, science and innovation system of tomorrow.

Some of our latest projects

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The first IMAGINARY exhibition takes place in the Technical University in Munich.
The Surfer program is developed.
Our exhibition tours 12 cities in Germany and is visited by over 120,000 people.
First Surfer competitions with the journal Die Zeit and the periodical Spektrum der Wissenschaft.
IMAGINARY travels the world! Events are organized in Austria, the United States, Ukraine and Pakistan.
The Ukraine event is the first fully organized, localized and built by locals.
The MiMa (Museum for Minerals and Mathematics) opens in Oberwolfach, featuring IMAGINARY exhibits.
Talks and workshops take place in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Mumbai.
IMAGINARY Spain becomes the first regional unit, organizing exhibitions in multiple cities and a local conference.
The first IMAGINARY event in Latin America takes place in Colombia.
The first IMAGINARY event in East Asia is held in Suzhou, China. Several exhibitions in Russia and Argentina.
The MoMath museum opens in New York with a custom version of Surfer as one of its exhibits.
The Mathematics of Planet Earth Exhibition is launched in Paris, with IMAGINARY as a partner.
IMAGINARY participates in the Bridges Conference for the first time (and has returned every year).
The new IMAGINARY website provides an open and collaborative online archive of math exhibits.
The Entdeckerbox, a box containing both physical objects and software, is made available.
The IMAGINARY Uruguay team begins their journey.
Gert-Martin Greuel and Andreas Matt win the Medienpreis Mathematik 2013 by the Deutsche Mathematiker Vereinigung (DMV) for IMAGINARY.
The first IMAGINARY event in Africa is held in Tanzania.
IMAGINARY France is established.
IMAGINARY is present at the ICM 2014 in Seoul, South Korea, with the biggest exhibition so far.
A record 58 events all over the world. IMAGINARY Turkey and IMAGINARY South Korea translate our content for local events.
The Snapshots of Mathematics project is published.
The IMAGINARY gGmbH spins off as an independent non-profit organization.
The IMAGINARY Conference (IC16) is held in Berlin for over 150 people in 4 days of talks and workshops.
Mathematikon a mathematical shopping center in Heidelberg, opens with IMAGINARY exhibits and collaborations.
We opened our office in Berlin at Mittenwalder Str. 48
The Science Spaces project begins in collaboration with several Goethe-Institutes worldwide.
The second Mathematics of Planet Earth competition was held and the winners were exhibited in London.
It’s IMAGINARY’s 10th anniversary!
Our network accelerator STEAM Hub connected businesses with artists, scientists and communicators.
The second IMAGINARY Conference (IC18) took place in Montevideo, Uruguay.
The Holo-Math mixed reality project was showcased in the Next Einstein Forum in Rwanda and the ICM 2018 in Rio.
We created the exhibition La La Lab, about the Mathematics of Music.
We collaborated with other european partners in the Mathina and TROP ICSU projects.
Our AI Jam exhibit, based on Google Magenta software, toured Germany in the MS Wissenschaft science boat and as part of the ScienceStation project.
We created the International Day of Mathematics website and developed activities and resources to promote worldwide celebrations.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic we opened our first online exhibition, I AM A.I.
We developed the Future Mobility Simulator interactive city building exhibit for Futurium (Berlin).
We experienced and played with A.I. along many students in our series of AI explained workshops for Goethe-Institutes worldwide.
Our physical exhibition I AM A.I. was finally able to open in Heidelberg starting its tour of several German cities.
We launched our first 10-Minute Museum dedicated to mathematical models of the climate crisis.
We join forces with MoMath and the IHP for the MATRIX × IMAGINARY conference in Paris.

Since the birth of IMAGINARY there have been 311 events in 55 countries.