OpenheartCreatures Now Has a Permanent Installation in the New Wonder Room at the Columbus Museum of Art



OpenHeartCreatures is proud to announce a permanent installation in the new Wonder Room at the Columbus Museum of Art. The Wonder room is a family friendly interactive space for hands on creativity and hands on imagination play. This magical forest exhibit includes a tree house, a “one of a kind” moving mirror, spaces to create unique art, and a wall with Heidi Kambitsch’s custom handmade costumes. Come visit the museum to dress up and transform yourself into a bat, a bird, a merged animal, or even a wicked troll. All ages welcome!


Here are a few things people have to say about it.




 “It is so unbelievably cool that this person gets to be a force in our children’s lives. Way to go, Heidi and Openheartcreatures! Can’t wait to check out the Wonder Room at Columbus Museum of Art”. ~ Susan Wallace (OpenheartART parent)


Heidi is silly and imaginative and caring and makes Columbus a much, much better place. Take a second to watch this PBS piece and learn more about the Open Heart Creatures gang. It’s a great video, but seeing them at Goodale Park, Pecha Kucha and other events are wonderfully inspiring. I hope you get to interact with them (and play) sometime soon.”~ James Thornburg


 “Well done Heidi Kambitsch! What a pleasure to know you and what a gift for our kids to spend their days with you. Simply magical.” ~Julia M. Applegate (OpenheartART parent)


 “Heidi, I have to be honest here… I have always wanted to come out and see your shows, possibly photograph them, maybe even photograph the process (sewing, preparing, etc) — but, I have always been scared. Masks horrify me. I couldn’t even make it through whole videos or albums. 

I don’t like not being able to see people’s eyes and facial movements. I could not think of something more terrifying than a masquerade ball. 

That being said, seeing this video was very impacting for me. One line in particular hit home. You mentioned your work with children trying to cope with uncomfortable situations and how the masks/puppets were used as tools (which I did not know). Then you said, “It is about creating space for people to feel comfortable to express themselves. […] And, play.” 

There is an irony there in those words — something I’ve found so fearful my whole life, is something you use to provide comfort. 

The way you said it, put me IN the costume instead of being a viewer of the costume. It allowed me to feel how that would feel. For example, I have anxiety. Performing in front of people, is right up there with a masquerade ball, ha! But….. if I were in a costume, I could be whatever facet of myself I wanted. I could match a costume to a particular feeling or expression. 

There is something about the way you delivered that line, that obliterated my fear of your body puppets. Where at first I was seeing the puppets as a barricade between me & my ability to read another person…. now, I see a way to experience parts of someone I may have never had the chance to. I see a way for people to communicate without “all eyes on them.” A way to be vulnerable, while still wrapped in a blanket (so to speak). 

I’ve always thought your idea was beautiful, due to my own fear, I was just not willing to actually experience the beauty in person. I had no doubt of the beauty though. But now…. I don’t feel that same discomfort. I am excited to finally come out and experience this in person. Thank you, for this. Your interview is eloquent and luring. Your open heart is felt.” ~ AJ Ingram Elijah




“What you describe is my feeling being inside of one of Heidi’s giant head puppets. Playing while wearing those puppets unleashed a sense of play inside of myself and somehow through my limbs, hands, feet, hips and head that I know came from inside of me but couldn’t remember the last time I had experienced that level of freedom and flow of creativity. The way I chose to move my body was influenced by the puppet head, and just opened a channel or turned on a faucet of freedom and creativity. I literally surprised myself with my own movements and sense of play. It’s completely freeing. I can’t really explain it. But it’s unlike anything I’ve ever experienced.” ~Kim Crabtree




“Heidi creates a way for people to show their imagination though body puppets and helps you think outside of the box. It opens your mind and heart to a whole new way to play with your imagination. It also creates a way for people to feel more comfortable with their inner self. Some people are scared to be seen in costumes that may make them seem weird or silly. When you are behind a mask or puppet your imagination wonders and brings out the kid in you. It can also give you a freedom to be silly and not so serious. The puppets are the away to play and connect with people away from a computer screen or phone screen.” ~ Cellissa Woods (Openheartcreatures student intern)




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