Muse Knoxville We Bee-Long Exhibit

The Muse Knoxville is a children’s science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) museum serving East Tennessee. The Muse seeks to inspire young minds and bring STEAM to life through transformative, hands-on learning experiences. 

Their latest exterior exhibit, called “We Bee-Long”, will engage visitors in understanding the important role of pollination in our world, motivating them to become conservation advocates for honeybees, and educating them on the communication methods of honeybees. The first component of the We Bee-Long exhibit is The Hexagon. 

Working with the Muse, BMA developed the pro-bono design for The Hexagon to not only function for the new We Bee-Long exhibit, but to also serve as a pop-up “parklet” installation for Knoxville’s annual Park(ing) Day celebration. Park(ing) Day temporarily removes street parking from the core of downtown Knoxville and showcases the benefits of exploiting metered spaces as sites for art, community engagement, and play. The installation of The Hexagon during Park(ing) Day provided the Muse a wonderful opportunity to engage with the general public, raise awareness, showcase their mission, and generate excitement for We Bee-Long. 

The Hexagon draws inspiration from honeycomb architecture resulting in a robust, self-supporting structure while maximizing material efficiencies. Integrated benching allows visitors to rest and contemplate the experience of the larger We Bee-Long exhibit. Planters featuring pollinator gardens are incorporated into the design to allow for additional hands-on learning opportunities. Vibrant accents of yellows and blues, colors that are most attractive to honeybees, embellish the structure and enhance the educational aspects of the design. 

Pollinators are responsible for one in every three bites of food that humans consume. Despite their indispensable role in the Earth’s ecosystem, honeybee populations have been declining for decades. We Bee-Long will encourage young visitors and their families to learn about pollinator basics while helping to eliminate the culture of fear surrounding honeybees.  

    Completion Date: 2022

    Type: New Construction

    Location: Knoxville, Tennessee

    Services: Architecture

    Use: Education

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