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.
“But why paint a dinosaur blue?”: Envisioning the Cretaceous—A vitalizing, multidisciplinary project in a university museum
Published:February 24, 2022
Todd M. Rowan, Thomas Brent Funderburk, Renee M. Clary, 2022. "“But why paint a dinosaur blue?”: Envisioning the Cretaceous—A vitalizing, multidisciplinary project in a university museum", The Evolution of Paleontological Art, Renee M. Clary, Gary D. Rosenberg, Dallas C. Evans
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In 2017–2018, two fine arts undergraduate students, Todd Rowan and Moesha Wright, conceived and created a mural for the Dunn-Seiler Museum at Mississippi State University, Mississippi, USA, under the supervision of art professor emeritus Brent Funderburk. Students researched, conceptualized, and painted Mississippi Cretaceous Panorama, which interpreted the Late Cretaceous landscape that once surrounded the university and the momentous extinction event that brought the Mesozoic Era to its close. The project necessitated creativity to address several challenges, including funding, space constraints, and a local population with Young Earth views. The completed mural engages museum visitors with a mosasaur, ceratopsian dinosaur, and a meteorite impact—illustrating the local, terminal Mesozoic geologic history in a nonthreatening venue that can improve community geoliteracy.