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Category Archives: Exhibit

Curator

‘I don’t know what you mean by “glory”,’ Alice said. Humpty Dumpty smiled contemptuously. ‘Of course you don’t — till I tell you. I meant “there’s a nice knock-down argument for you!”‘ ‘But “glory” doesn’t mean “a nice knock-down argument”,’ Alice objected. ‘When I use a word,’ Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, ‘it means just what I choose it to mean — neither more nor less.’ ‘The…

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The Old Museum Lives On

  Winnipeg has a long and complicated history of museums featuring natural history collections. Our current museum was a centennial project, opened in 1970, but we are very fortunate that we possess vestiges of those earlier museums, such as minerals from the Carnegie Library collection and mounted animals from some of the early taxidermists. The most visible and best-documented of these “inheritances” are pieces that were exhibited in the old…

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Marvellous Molluscs

This has been a year rich in exhibit work, and we are finishing off with a bit of a bang. About a week ago we finished installation of our latest Discovery Room exhibit, a collaboration between Zoology and Paleontology entitled The World is Their Oyster: Marvellous Molluscs. As with the other D-Room exhibits we have produced (such as Jaws and Teeth and Colours in Nature), this was a collaborative effort. It…

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The Mineral Exhibit 2: Installation

The past week we have been very busy installing our temporary exhibit on molluscs (The World is Their Oyster: Marvellous Molluscs), which will open in a few days. While thinking about this exhibit process, I remembered that there are some splendid photos of the installation of our mineral exhibit, courtesy of our designer, Stephanie Whitehouse. So as a follow-up to the post about that exhibit a few months back, here…

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The Mineral Exhibit

 If you visit this page occasionally and have been wondering about when the next blog post would be forthcoming, well, I had been wondering that too. I have begun new posts several times, but in each instance my focus has been pulled away by the same all-consuming activity: my time has been taken up by the completion of a mineral exhibit. This past week, we finally did the installation, so…

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Replicating rex

The Manitoba Museum is home to many unusual and unique specimens. Among the most remarkable is the world’s largest complete trilobite, the holotype specimen of the species Isotelus rex. Over the years we have occasionally received requests from other museums for replicas of this striking fossil. More than a decade ago, before the specimen ever went on exhibit, we had a mould prepared by an outside contractor who also made…

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Display of Detritus and Delight

The spaces that house Museum curators and collections are, perhaps, notorious for appearing to be crammed full of objects. Our work consists of collecting and organizing, and actively-collecting Museum scientists typically have many specimens spread out for study and cataloguing. Our collections rooms contain many thousands of well-organized specimens, but it is tricky to find space for the largest pieces. For this reason, some of our biggest specimens are not…

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The Sloth’s Tale

Ever since the Museum’s Earth History Gallery opened in the early 1970s, visitors have been struck by the appearance of a giant skeleton near the end of the gallery. Many children (and perhaps more than a few adults) have thought that it is a dinosaur, but it is in fact a mammal from the much more recent past, a replica of the giant ground sloth Megatherium americanum. Megatherium was a…

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Amethyst Update

The amethyst exhibit in the foyer was installed today, on schedule. There were a few teething pains, mostly related to lighting, but when you have done many exhibits you know that you will never be finished without some sort of issue. The last 5% of the installation work always takes 50% of the time. As a public space, the foyer has a lot of ambient light, which means that there is an immense…

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A.M.E.T.H.Y.S.T.

For the past several years, I have been working with the Mineral Society of Manitoba to develop a mineral exhibit at the Museum. This partnership has been a wonderfully positive one; among other achievements the Society has donated to us a gorgeous selenite (gypsum) cluster from the Winnipeg Floodway, which I hope to show you on this page at some point. So it was not a total surprise when in…

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