The Evolution of Paleontological Art
CONTAINS OPEN ACCESS
Fossils have stirred the imagination globally for thousands of years, starting well before they were recognized as the remains of once-living organisms and proxies of former worlds. This volume samples the history of art about fossils and the visual conceptualization of their significance starting with biblical and mythological depictions, extending to renditions of ancient life as it flourished in long-vanished habitats, and on to a modern understanding that fossil art conveys lessons for the betterment of the human condition. The 29 papers and accompanying artwork illustrate how art about fossils has come to be a significant teaching tool not only about evolution of past life, but also about conservation of our planet for the benefit of future generations.
The influence of scientific knowledge on mollusk and arthropod illustration
Published:February 24, 2022
Consuelo Sendino*, 2022. "The influence of scientific knowledge on mollusk and arthropod illustration", The Evolution of Paleontological Art, Renee M. Clary, Gary D. Rosenberg, Dallas C. Evans
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Our attraction to fossils is almost as old as humans themselves, and the way fossils are represented has changed and evolved with technology and with our knowledge of these organisms. Invertebrates were the first fossils to be represented in books and illustrated according to their original form. The first worldwide illustrations of paleoinvertebrates by recognized authors, such as Christophorus Encelius and Conrad Gessner, considered only their general shape. Over time, paleoillustrations became more accurate and showed the position of organisms when they were alive and as they had appeared when found. Encyclopedic works such as those of the Sowerbys or Joachim Barrande have left an important legacy on fossil invertebrates, summarizing the knowledge of their time. Currently, new discoveries, techniques, and comparison with extant specimens are changing the way in which the same organisms are shown in life position, with previously overlooked taxonomically important elements being displayed using modern techniques. This chapter will cover the history of illustrations, unpublished nineteenth-century author illustrations, examples showing fossil reconstructions, new techniques and their influence on taxonomical work with regard to illustration, and the evolution of paleoinvertebrate illustration.