Missing Link Comes Back to Life in High Desert Museum Exhibition

Dinosaurs Take Flight bridges the span between dinosaurs and birds

Which came first, the feather or the bird? Learn the answer in Dinosaurs Take Flight: The Art of Archaeopteryx, a new exhibition that opened at the High Desert Museum in October.

Art meets science in this exhibition, which features more than fifty pieces of original artwork, murals, sculptures, interactive displays and a collection of fossils from the Solnhofen limestone in Germany, where Archaeopteryx lived some 150 million years ago. The name Archaeopteryx is from two Greek words meaning “ancient wing.”

“Archaeopteryx has been long considered as the ‘first bird’ by paleontologists,” said the Museum’s Executive Director Dana Whitelaw, Ph.D. “Fossils of Archaeopteryx that were discovered in 1861 provided a critical bridge between dinosaurs and birds and have sparked the understanding of the origin of birds and flight.”

Six renowned paleo-artists from around the world worked closely with scientists to create stunning images of what the raven-sized dinosaur looked like. The exhibition runs through April 4, 2018.

Events associated with this exhibition are scheduled for the fall including The Origin and Evolution of Feathers and Flight on November 2 at 6pm. Dr. Julia Clarke, professor and Wilson Centennial Fellow in Vertebrate Paleontology at The University of Texas at Austin, will share her research into the evolution of flight and feathers and discuss the challenges of paleontological research. Cost is $3 for members and $7 for non-members.

A Night at the High Desert Museum is a family-friendly sleepover for kids ages five to 13 and their adult chaperones on November 3 and 4, from 5pm through 9am. Dinner and a light breakfast will be provided. Cost is $75 for members and $85 for non-members.

On November 18, from 10:30am-12pm, young artists will use clues from fossils to learn how paleo-artists reconstruct the missing pieces of extinct animals and their environments during How Dinosaurs Came to Fly: Drawing on the Clues. Ideal for families of six- to 12-year-olds, this workshop costs $10 for members and $15 for non-members. Seating is limited, so registration and pre-payment is required.


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