national museum natural history


When Scientists Get Accidentally Artsy

A new exhibit at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History lies right at the intersection of art and science, showcasing the inherent beauty of skeletons — that is, fish skeletons.


THE NACIONAL SIBLINGS! (Tribute art to the National Museum of the Philippines)

ink on paper

digitally colored in Adobe Photoshop CC


Meet the Museum Trio: Sergio, Antonio & Faustino Nacional! The gorgeous daddies of Old Manila! inspired by the three structures of National Museum of the Philippines.

Sergio is a gritty old man with burning passion for all forms of art. He is the eldest brother. The creases on his face represent the many years of his dedication to uplift the status of fine arts in the country. Despite his stoic face, Sergio is surprisingly approachable and warm. He is the National Arts Gallery

Antonio is one of the Nacional twins. An anthropologist who dedicated most of his life documenting the complex culture across all of Philippines’ history. Antonio is obviously an intellectual being but is never arrogant to think he knows everything. He represents the National Museum of Anthropology

Faustino is the younger another half of the Nacional twins. Had a sudden change of heart when he came back home from traveling all over the country. Now he’s a naturalist eager to share more about Philippine’s incomparable natural wonders. He is the National Museum of Natural History

Together, the Nacional brothers will always be there to promote our countries invaluable heritage!

The buildings are in Neoclassical style so their clothes are neoclassical too! However, I added a local flavor to it by blending it with our very own illustrado fashion and styling.

For Sergio, (S - Sining (art in Filipino)) I wanted his look to be minimal, manly yet with a hint of flamboyance or grace.

As for Antonio (Ant - anthropology), I added okir patterns on his coat to relate his clothes with the indigenous arts of Filipinos.

As for Faustino (Fau- Fauna), I went for cool shades of color present in Philippine nature particularly its water and rainforests. I also added an umbrella with a somewhat modern geometric pattern to go with his neoclassical look. that represents the tree of life which is a part of the drastic overhaul of the museum (which will open very soon!) His coat is also adorned with the national flower of the Philippines which is known as the Waling Waling or Vanda sanderiana.  It is considered to be one of the three most beautiful flowers in the world (The other two, I believe, are Rhododendron and Cattleya)

I am so proud of this art! I finally was able to draw something I think that is relevant to my country, not to mention that this combined my interest in visual arts, fashion, architecture, and literature and that this is entirely different from my usual subjects (which are my two gay OCs). I am so inspired by the artists I have discovered and befriended in Fb and Ig who are Jap Mikel, Redge Tolentino, Brent Sabas, and Japhers. I would like to thank them for making opuses that matter. I made this art as a thank you to the effort of the stakeholders to uplift the status of the museum of the Philippines! There is so much overhaul that is happening in the old district that it’s really exciting!


Hey Arch, I’ve been following your blog throughout my undergraduate degree in Env. Design and it’s been a great resource! I really appreciate what you do for the community and the people asking you questions. I was wondering if you might have insight about projects that could help inform my current studio project. I decided to propose a version of the Center for Truth and Reconciliation at the UofM.

It’s a mix of Museum/Research/Archives/Classrooms/Great Hall/Gathering space. Would you happen to know of any  precedent that might help inform my form, circulation, etc? Have a good weekend! Cheers A

Storage Rooms Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

Most major museums have a combination of most of these uses. The most obvious ones in my opinion would be the :

  • Smithsonian Institution (all the images in the post)
  • MET,
  • Tate (check out the recently completed extension by Herzog & de Meuron)
  • Louvre (check out the Louvre Lens by SANAA)

Keep reading
Fossil of oldest known baleen-whale relative unearthed in Peru
Skeleton from South America enables palaeontologists to piece together the puzzle of baleen-whale evolution.

The discovery of a whale fossil dating back to 36.4 million years ago has filled in a gaping hole in the evolution of baleen whales, a group that includes humpbacks (Megaptera novaeangliae) and blue whales (Balaenoptera musculus). The creature, named Mystacodon selenensis, is the oldest baleen-whale relative yet found.

The skeleton displays traits that place it firmly as the first baleen-whale relative known to emerge after an ancient group of whale ancestors called basilosaurids split into two: one branch led to the toothed whales, which include sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus) and dolphins, and the other to baleen whales. Researchers reported their findings on 11 May in Current Biology1.

“This is the fossil that we’ve been waiting for,” says Nick Pyenson, a palaeontologist at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington DC. Whale fossils from this time period can answer a lot of questions that researchers have about the origins of living whale lineages, he says. They include the appearance of the earliest baleen whale ancestors.

Continue Reading.

Grover Krantz was an American anthropologist and one of the very few scientists to have researched Bigfoot as well as believing in cryptids, something that actually cost him research grants and promotions due to the criticism he received. He passed away from pancreatic cancer on 14 February, 2004, and at his request, no funeral was held; his body was taken to the body farm where the decomposition could be studied to aid forensic investigations. Following this, he had requested that his body was laid to rest in a green cabinet in the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History alongside his three Irish Wolfhounds, Yahoo, Clyde, and Lucky, whom he had also donated to science following their death. In 2009, his skeleton was articulated along with the skeleton of one of his beloved dogs where they were put on display.

Cuba’s political relationship with the United States is changing, and with it, potentially it’s biodiversity. In this podcast, conservation biologist and co-curator of the exhibition ¡Cuba! , Ana Luz Porzecanski, moderates a panel on contemporary Cuba, its people, identity, and biodiversity. You will hear from historian and policy expert Julia Sweig, anthropologist Ruth Behar, environmental lawyer Dan Whittle, and Museum herpetologist and co-curator of ¡Cuba! Chris Raxworthy.

This event took place at the Museum on March 9, 2017.

¡Cuba! was developed in collaboration with the Cuban National Museum of Natural History.

Major funding for ¡Cuba! has been provided by the Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Endowment Fund.

Significant support for ¡Cuba! has been provided by the Ford Foundation.

Generous support for ¡Cuba! has been provided by the Dalio Ocean Initiative.

¡Cuba! is proudly supported by JetBlue.

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