Three experimental installations at the Dayton Art Institute wil take visitors through elements of water in nature.

Watch: When 450 stuffed penguins follow your every move

A colony of revolving penguins is not something you see every day.

But hundreds of them will follow your every move at the Dayton Art Institute.

“Penguins Mirror,” by Israeli artist Daniel Rozin, is one three experimental installations in the DAI’s new exhibit, “The Antarctic Sublime & Elements of Nature: Water.”

The installation, made up of 450 stuffed penguins, “is a great deal of fun,” said Michael Roediger, director and CEO of the DAI. “They move with you as you stand in front of the camera and respond to you and try and make your shape.”

The installations will take visitors through three elements of water in nature, Roediger said.


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A large-scale photograph of a glacier by Berlin-based artist Frank Thiel will join the penguins. The sounds of a calving glacier will be an element in the gallery.

Water flows down a 10-foot-high digital waterfall in another gallery. “The screens that it is projected through are five times greater than the HD we are used to on televisions now,” Roediger said. “It’s really that sharp.”

Visitors have reacted to the exhibit, open through Oct. 16, with a sense of wonder. “You’re supposed to have an experience with it,” Roediger said. “I hope when they leave they have a sense of joy and hope.”

Of the twisting penguins, he said, “It’s a lot of work to put these 450 penguins together and get them all turning and moving in unison. It’s kind of like synchronized penguins.”

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