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This museum plays tricks on your mind

Kidsday reporters from the Wading River Elementary School

Kidsday reporters from the Wading River Elementary School at the Museum of Illusions in Manhattan Credit: Newsday / Pat Mullooly

We visited the Museum of Illusions in Manhattan. There are lots of great museums in New York City, but what makes this one so different? It is unique because it is the only one like it. We had a private tour with Renne Gjoni, the owner and CEO of the museum. It opened less than a week before we visited.

The museum’s exhibits trick your mind. Each exhibit uses a variety of lights, colors, angles, distance, mirrors and reflection. Here are just a few of the illusions we really enjoyed:

The Chair Illusion: One person is closer to the camera and one is farther back. There is a chair on the ground with no legs, where one person sits. The legs were about 10 feet in front just sticking out of the floor. The other person stands on a mark on the floor and holds their hand out. When the picture is taken it looks like one person is very tiny sitting on the chair, while the other person is normal-sized and looks as if they are patting the smaller person’s head.

The Infinity Room: This is a room of mirrors that makes you think there are many versions of yourself. However, the mirrors are actually reflecting off each other, so your brain thinks there are multiples of you.  

The Color Room: The primary color room had three colored lights against a wall: red, yellow and blue.  When you turned away from the wall with colors, the colors would reflect off the person and mix and cause the lights to spread into three parts.  The colors would mix and cause different colors.  

Holograms:The holograms looked real but the colors are mostly orange and green. The details were so cool. You feel like you can really touch the images. The projectors are hung from the ceiling and it makes it look 3D.

After our tour, we sat down with Renne and asked a few questions.

Are there any other locations opening up around the world?

A Museum of Illusions is opening in Germany, Kansas City, Canada, Netherlands and Saudi Arabia.

How do the games and puzzles in the smart room make you smarter?  

The puzzles and games challenge your mind. They make you think and become smarter.

How long did it take to build this museum?

It took two years to find a location and seven months to build.

How often will you change the exhibits?

Each year some of the exhibits will change. This way people will get to learn about other illusions if they visit again.

Which is the most popular exhibit?

The infinity room because there was a long line out of the room the last few days.

Do you have a favorite part of the museum?

The tilted room is my favorite because it is very simple, and a lot of people happen to like it. It also plays with your senses.  

Our NYC trip was exciting and fun. We had a great experience and can’t wait to go back. If you are interested in illusions, we would recommend you visit the Museum of Illusions. It is located: 77 Eighth Ave., Manhattan, call 212-645-3230.

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