Frank Friedman Oppenheimer

Born 1912-08-14 in New York, USA.
Died 1985-02-03 in Sausalito, USA.


Member of institution(s): Exploratorium
Exhibitions organized: Cybernetic Serendipity

Frank Friedman Oppenheimer Younger brother of J. Robert Oppenheimer. Studied physics at Johns Hopkins U. and got his Ph.D. from CalTech. 1936 he married the communist activist Jackie Quann. He was friends with rocket scientist and painter Frank Malina.
In the late 40ies he was prosecuted by the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HCUA) and could find no work as a physicist since. He and his wife settled as cattle farmers in Colorado. 1959 Oppenheimer was allowed to teach physics at Colorado U and became dedicated to science education.
1965 he learned about science museums in Europe and founded the Exploratorium in San Francisco four years later. Cybernetic Serendipity was the first major exhibition on the site. Scientific American later named the institution “the best science museum in the world”.