Friday, April 03, 2015

Museum Exhibit: Mythic Creatures

This is a great exhibit (currently at the Denver Museum ofNature and Science), created by AMNH, Field Museum, and others. It mixes real animals (life-size Gigantopithecus (biggest primate ever) and Aepyornis (elephant bird of Madagascar), mythical (European and Chinese dragons, a stunning model of Sinbad's roc as a giant golden-eagle looking bird, mermaids, Inuit and Japanese water spirits, among others) and cryptozoology. There's an interesting setup where you can "See a Serpent" by moving whales and dolphins through waves and getting the impression of a large single creature. The Denver Museum added mythic creatures of Colorado, with a jackalope, a fur-bearing trout, and other creatures. Bigfoot gets a surprisingly brief mention given his prominence among cryptozoological creatures.   There are short videos on animals of land and air (the land one includes anthropologist Adrienne Mayor talking about fossils and their interpretations as mythical creatures and comments by George Schaller). It's a terrific collection with a good exhibit store (none of MY books, though cryptozoology authors Loren Coleman and Ivan Sanderson get in, along with Mayor and some modern bestiaries.)  It’s in Denver through the summer!

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