American Museum of Natural History

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American Museum of N - It’s time for Trilobite Tuesday! The Silurian | The planets orbit the Sun in a fairly flat | Did you know that the black-and-white..

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American Museum of Natural History Photo 2018-05-22 14:14

It’s time for Trilobite Tuesday! The Silurian exposures of the English Midlands have been yielding amazing trilobite specimens for centuries. Those from the Wenlock limestone formations near the town of Dudley are among the most beautiful in the world. One particular species, Calymene blumenbach...
American Museum of Natural History Video 2018-05-22 00:56

American Museum of Natural History Video 2018-05-22 00:56

The planets orbit the Sun in a fairly flat plane. How does that plane relate to the orientation of the Milky Way? If we could see the Sun moving among our night sky constellations, which direction would it be heading? Watch this video to learn how our solar system makes its way through our galaxy.

American Museum of Natural History Photo 2018-05-21 20:18

Did you know that the black-and-white colobus monkey has no thumbs, just stumps? What may seem like a bug is actually a feature: the lack of thumb helps this arboreal primate swing easily and efficiently from tree to tree using its four long fingers to hook onto branches. This bushy-tailed Old...

American Museum of Natural History Photo 2018-05-21 13:49

Happy birthday to Mary Anning, the mother of paleontology! Born on this day in 1799, she hailed from Lyme Regis on the coast of Dorset, England, and grew up collecting fossils. At age 13, she unearthed a skeleton of a giant marine reptile, one of the first ichthyosaurs. In her late 20s...

American Museum of Natural History Photo 2018-05-21 00:48

The Caribbean reef squid (Sepioteuthis sepioidea) lives in the tropical waters of Florida, Bermuda, Venezuela, and Cozumel, to name a few places—sounds nice, right? It hangs out along reefs and grass beds in schools anywhere from four to 50 individuals. Seagrass beds are a favorite s...

American Museum of Natural History Photo 2018-05-20 19:45

Charles Darwin once described the Greater Rhea (Rhea americana) as a “South American ostrich.” But while it is a member of the broad group of flightless birds known as ratites, which includes ostriches, emus, and cassowaries, it’s not thought to be a close relative. The Greater Rhea is t...

American Museum of Natural History Photo 2018-05-20 13:41

Cassava is one tough plant: it can grow in poor and unfertile soil in most tropical environments. It’s also an important food source for people all over the world. This bushy plant has roots that weigh as much as 30 pounds! These heavy roots are sometimes mashed into pancakes or sliced and fried...

American Museum of Natural History Photo 2018-05-20 00:10

This tiny critter turned out to be a big discovery when it was first photographed in 2005 in remote mountain forests of Tanzania. Weighing in at about 1.5 pounds, the grey-faced sengi (Rhynchocyon udzungwensis), was the first new species of giant elephant-shrew to be discovered in 126 years!...

American Museum of Natural History Photo 2018-05-19 19:39

What comes to mind when you hear the phrase “witches’ butter?” Perhaps a magical concoction of sorts? Well, it’s actually a common name for a species of fungus: Tremella mesenterica, which looks like a yellow-orange gummy (and is edible, but flavorless). It’s found in forests around ...

American Museum of Natural History Photo 2018-05-19 13:14

This gorgeous 2-foot-long slice from a jadeite jade boulder provides a spectacular window into the dramatic process that formed it. This jadeite started as a small vein, or fracture, more than 12 miles underground, which was wrenched apart by the collision of two tectonic plates more than 35 m...

American Museum of Natural History Photo 2018-05-19 00:13

Talk about stone-cold looks! The gharial (Gavialis gangeticus) seems to have mastered the art. This reptile, one of the world’s largest crocodilians, is famous for its long, narrow snout, which makes it a powerful underwater predator. For one, the snout is lined with sensory cells th...

American Museum of Natural History Photo 2018-05-18 20:07

Single-celled organisms known as radiolarians flourish throughout the world’s oceans. Their silica skeletons—called tests—take seemingly endless forms, combining plates, spicules, and other shapes. When radiolarians die, their sturdy skeletons—known as tests—sink to the ocean floor. In fact,...
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MoMA The Museum of Modern Art Photo 2018-05-21 20:27

One of the earthworks artists of the 1960s and 1970s, Robert Smithson manipulated the natural landscape in his work—sometimes drastically, with a bulldozer, and sometimes simply and temporarily, through mirrors, as in “Corner Mirror with Coral” (1969). Experience this work in #GundStudioVisit, our exhibition celebrating gifts from the remarkable Agnes “Aggie” Gund, a longtime Trustee of the Museum. While viewing this artwork Aggie noted, “I always like the Smithsons that are mirrored. Obviously they're very captivating and they show another dimension...you see out differently when you have a mirror. A mirror makes it bigger, smaller, taller, higher.... I think Smithson's idea of putting heaps of things there and having them reflected, it was quite wonderful.” … [Artwork details: Robert Smithson. “Corner Mirror with Coral.” 1969. Mirrors and coral. Gift of Agnes Gund in honor of Ann Temkin]

National Gallery of Art Photo 2018-05-21 14:46

Claude Monet painted four versions of “The Artist’s Garden at Vétheuil” in summer of 1881. We often assume that the artist worked quickly and out-of-doors. However, Monet’s process for painting these works—two of which are seen here—was more complex. For this view of his garden in Vétheuil, Monet revisited the same scene, possibly moving back and forth between the paintings and making revisions. Although the Gallery’s version (on the right) has always been assumed to be the culmination of the four, its relationship to the other works is not as clear cut as previously believed. The work on the left is from the Norton Simon Museum, as part of a long-term series of loan exchanges between our two museums. These paintings of Monet’s garden are on view together for the first time since they were created more than 100 years ago. See them through August 8 in Gallery 85 on the Main Floor of the West Building. https://go.usa.gov/xQEEh