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December 01, 2009

Cruisin’ the Fossil Freeway opens in two weeks

Exhibit features best of Burke fossils and art by Ray Troll, December 19, 2009 - May 31, 2010

High-resolution images are available for download here.

Seattle – In two weeks, Cruisin' the Fossil Freeway opens at the Burke Museum, bringing together the best of the Burke Museum's fossil collection and the fossil-inspired artwork of celebrated artist Ray Troll to explore questions about evolution, extinction, and early life on Earth. Troll's whimsical illustrations of imagined scenes from prehistoric times are placed side-by-side with real fossils of giant ammonites, killer pigs, saber-toothed cats, dinosaurs and more incredible fossils from the Burke Museum's paleontology collection. Cruisin' the Fossil Freeway will remain on view through May 31, 2010.

Using art to explain scientific concepts, the Burke Museum collaborated with 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.

Cruisin' the Fossil Freeway 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.

In addition to fossils, the Burke Museum is exhibiting many specimens from the museum's mammal, bird, plant, and fish collections in an adjoining gallery called Evolution Evidence. An orca skeleton, an enormous albatross, and many contemporary fish and plant species are among the specimens never before exhibited at the Burke Museum that will be used to illustrate the evolution of life on Earth. The Evolution Evidence gallery will be open to the public as part of the Cruisin' the Fossil Freeway exhibit, but it will also function as a teaching space for visiting school groups.

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 a 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.


Related Events

Exhibit Opening Day: Cruisin' the Fossil Freeway
Sat., Dec. 19, 10:30 am – 2:30 pm

Tour the new Burke Museum exhibit with co-curators Dr. Elizabeth Nesbitt of the Burke Museum, and Dr. Kirk Johnson of the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, and meet Alaskan artist Ray Troll.

25th Annual Dinosaur Day
Sat., March 6, 10 am – 4 pm
See tons of real dinosaur fossils from the Burke Museum's paleontology collection at the 25th annual Dinosaur Day! This popular event is fun for the whole family.

(206) 543-9762; FAX (206) 616-1274

Dreams of Didymoceros
Dreams of Didymoceros
By Ray Troll