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August 23, 2007
#07-36

Contact:
Jennifer Rankin Byrne or
Ruth Nyblod
(571) 272-8400 or
jennifer.byrne@uspto.gov or
ruth.nyblod@uspto.gov

Press Release, 07-36

New Exhibit Opens in Patent and Trademark Office Museum

"Art of Invention - Invention of Art" Features 70 Works of Art That Emerged From Inventions, Patents and Trademarks

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) Jon Dudas today opened the agency's new exhibit, "Art of Invention – Invention of Art." The exhibit features 70 works of art that emerged from inventions, patents and trademarks.

"The inventors and artists represented in this exhibit produced artistic treasures that also serve a practical purpose," noted Under Secretary Dudas. "Visitors may ask themselves, is it the art of invention or the invention of art? Either way, they will learn how the U.S. patent and trademark systems protect and encourage innovation, and they will learn about the men and women whose creativity has helped foster a strong, prosperous America."

The exhibit is arranged in two sections. The Art of Invention section highlights works from inventors and artists who studied and drew inspiration from the world in their quest for beauty, such as Louis Comfort Tiffany’s creations in glass or Eva Zeisel’s prolific work in ceramics. The Invention of Art section features inventions that have been of great significance to science or industry, but also have collateral value as art in unexpected images whose color, composition, and content can be seen as an object of beauty, for example, images from space taken by the Hubble Space Telescope. Some displays may have characteristics of both sides.

Other innovations on display include a Steinway piano, Firestone’s show car—a 1994 Lola T9300, images of bacteria and medication under a microscope, the designs of Michael Graves and Charles and Ray Eames, as well as many others that are protected by patents and trademarks.

Under Secretary Dudas also dedicated the new Isaac Fleischmann Theatre located in the museum. Isaac Fleischmann was the first director of the USPTO’s public affairs office and was an enthusiastic, eloquent and persuasive advocate of America’s intellectual property protection system for more than 50 years. A new video entitled, "Extraordinary Innovations," premiered and will be shown continuously in the theatre.

The United States Patent and Trademark Office Museum and store were developed and are maintained by the National Inventors Hall of Fame Foundation. The museum is located in the atrium of the Madison Building, 600 Dulany Street, Alexandria, VA, and is open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m., Saturday, 12 noon - 5 p.m., closed on Sundays and federal holidays. Admission is free. 

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