Tyrrell launching new exhibit this spring.
Specimen selection and renovations are currently underway for the opening of a new introductory exhibit called “Foundations” in the Royal Tyrrell Museum’s entrance gallery space for a grand opening on Friday, May 20.
Foundations aims to be an introduction to both the museum itself but to also prime visitors by laying a foundation for the key themes and principles which inform the science and ethos of palaeontology at the Tyrrell, in the hopes of enhancing visitor understanding and interpretation of what they’ll see throughout the rest of the museum.
Head of Marketing and Public Relations Carrie-Anne Lunde said Foundations was developed after a gap was identified in the introductory information to what palaeontology is and what fossils are and how scientists even know. “It’s designed as a more dynamic space to explore those more basic terms, using all kinds of tactile and engaging materials in order to do so,” Lunde said. "It’s purpose is to literally lay the foundations of what palaeontology is, and introduce individuals to palaeontology and evolution and the history of life on earth in a way that is as holistic as possible.”
Museum curator and Foundations committee member Craig Scott said the exhibit will introduce visitors to earth processes like tectonics, volcanoes, mountain building, erosion, deposition, with an Alberta-centric focus, as well the biological processes of evolution, speciation, and changes in time. “One thing that is really cool about this gallery is that it is very specimen heavy – primarily specimens from the Cretaceous period of Alberta to illustrate the concepts being talked about,” said Scott. Scott said the exhibit will be interactive and utilize innovative new techniques that the museum has never tried before and was unwilling to reveal before the opening on May 20.
Foundations is the second phase of a three year introductory area renovation, the first being the opening of “Fossils and Focus” last year. Foundations will replace the “Alberta Unearthed” exhibit which was created in 2008.
An artist’s mockup of the Royal Tyrrell Museum’s “Foundations” exhibit which will be opening on May 20. The new exhibit will be situated at the entrance gallery space of the museum and aims to introduce visitors to fundamental concepts and the science of palaeontology to enhance understanding and interpretation.