All Possible Paths: Richard Feynman’s Curious LifeAll Possible Paths: Richard Feynman’s Curious Life

A Curious Life

A Curious Life
Richard Feynman with bongo drums, 1956, Courtesy of Caltech Archives

Richard Feynman lived from 1918 to 1988 and his contributions to science were extraordinary. Beginning with his work on the atomic bomb in the early part of his career, to his breakthroughs in quantum mechanics which earned him a Nobel Prize in 1965, his key role in investigating the Challenger Space Shuttle disaster in 1986, to his career as a much-loved professor at Caltech in the USA. 

Feynman has also been credited with pioneering the field of quantum computing, and introducing the concept of nanotechnology. He was ranked as one of the ten greatest physicists of all time in a 1999 poll by the UK journal, Physics World.

Yet, Feynman led an unusual life and it would be impossible to truly understand his approach to science without understanding the person he was. He put joy and humour into learning, and was famous for his practical jokes and passion for playing the bongos and cracking safes.

In the first section of the exhibition, discover Feynman’s life through personal letters and family photographs, his bongos, paintings, a recreation of the quirky van he used to drive, and a number of his own paintings, which are being exhibited outside of the United States for the first time.

72 unique artefacts provide a fascinating insight into Feynman’s world and highlight the many paths he took in his life.