Blake’s Brainiacs: Kids envision next 300 years of San Antonio at DoSeum

Tricentennial exhibit encourages children to plan for city’s future

What's in store for the next 300 years of San Antonio? At the DoSeum's Dream Tomorrow Today exhibit, children have the chance to dream up the inventions and city planning that will make a difference over the next three centuries.

"I think everyone likes envisioning what San Antonio can be in 300 years," said Drew Henry, the DoSeum's social media coordinator.

The DoSeum partnered with SA2020 and SATomorrow to create the exhibit. Children journey through a tunnel into the future, where they have a chance to reflect on sustainability, nature and growth, surrounded by a jungle of recyclables.

"The front of the exhibit and the time machine tunnel were designed by Calder Kamin, who's our artist-in-residence," Henry said. "Her whole vision was taking articles of the past and showing how we can recycle them and use them in the future."

The tunnel leads visitors to an interactive slide designed by the Japanese company Team Lab, the first of its kind in the United States The ride down is built to make kids feel like they're part of a mobile app.

"You try to hit different fruits and they move around," Henry said.

At the end of the slide is Sketch Town, an augmented reality wall that transforms children's drawings into a three-dimensional cityscape.

"Kids can scan their drawings in and then have them projected on the wall," Henry said. "You can touch them, move them around."

But city planning for youngsters doesn't stop there. Using another augmented reality platform, children can see how different community values work together to build sustainable cities (video below). Children must use tiles representing different buildings and services, such as hospitals, schools and parks, to protect their cities against an oncoming virtual disaster and save the lives of the virtual people within it.

Children can also use a job generator to pair their favorite interests with their dream jobs of the future, and they get to dress up to imagine themselves in those roles and act it out on a green screen.

At the end of the exhibit is a design lab, where children can participate in design workshops and create future object prototypes that support sustainability for a better tomorrow.

The Dream Tomorrow Today exhibit debuted on June 2 and will run through Jan. 6, 2019. This fall, the DoSeum will unveil upgrades to its Fairy Garden and Bubble Pavilion.

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