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October 19, 2009

Burke Presents Best of Fossil Collection alongside Fossil-Inspired Artwork in New Exhibit

Cruisin’ the Fossil Freeway, December 19, 2009 - May 31, 2010

Giant ammonites, killer pigs, saber-toothed cats, and dinosaurs: these fossils and others are among the best of the Burke Museum's paleontology collection and most have never before been exhibited. Now, these fossils will be on display to the public in a new Burke Museum exhibit that explores questions about evolution, extinction, and early life on Earth. Cruisin' the Fossil Freeway opens on December 19, 2009 and remains on view through May 31, 2010.

The Burke Museum has collaborated with celebrated artist Ray Troll and Seattle-born paleontologist Kirk Johnson to present this new exhibit exploring the abundance of fossils in our midst and how fossils shed light on Earth's past. Cruisin' the Fossil Freeway will travel nationally after closing in Seattle in late May 2010.

In addition to real fossils from the Burke's collection, Cruisin' the Fossil Freeway also features twenty framed originals and five large-scale murals of Troll's whimsical, fossil-inspired artwork, all of which were created for a book of the same title, published by Troll and Johnson in 2007. The book records the "epoch tale" of the duo's 5,000-mile road trip through the American West as they sought to explore the fossil record. The museum exhibit combines visuals and stories from the book with real fossil specimens from the Burke's own paleontology collection. Also on view will be a video highlighting Troll's artistic process.

Cruisin' the Fossil Freeway was organized by the Burke Museum in collaboration with Ray Troll and Kirk Johnson, authors of the book Cruisin' the Fossil Freeway: An Epoch Tale of Scientist and an Artist on the Ultimate 5,000-Mile Paleo Road Trip (Fulcrum Books 2007). Major sponsorship for the exhibition has been provided by Microsoft Corporation, Pendleton and Elisabeth Carey Miller Charitable Foundation, and Wells Fargo. Additional support has been provided by 4Culture, Edie Adams, The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, D.V. & Ida McEachern Charitable Trust, Puget Sound Energy, and The Zeidner Family Charitable Fund.

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A moonlit night somewhere near the town of Kremmling, Colorado seventy three million years ago
A moonlit night somewhere near the town of Kremmling, Colorado seventy three million years ago
Illustration by Ray Troll