Matagorda County Museum Our Blog Current and Recent Mythological Exhibits at the Museum of Natural History

Current and Recent Mythological Exhibits at the Museum of Natural History

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histolircal exhibits

In addition to telling the stories of their collections, museums use historical exhibits to provide a context for discussing and understanding the past. These historical exhibits may celebrate common events, memorialize tragedies or injustices, or encourage discussion of broader issues of significance and meaning. They do all this within the context of a complex process of research, interpretation, and reinterpretation. The standards that museums adopt for the exhibition of historical material are intended to foster informed discussion of these topics and their significance.

History has a powerful place in our national imagination and public memory. It unites us with our own ancestors, connects us to our global neighbors and compels us to look to the future. History exhibits in museums play a vital role in shaping this shared heritage and can inspire all people to explore their own unique places in history. Yet, despite this powerful influence, museums often fail to engage the full range of community members in their exhibitions. This is especially true for museums serving the most disadvantaged populations.

To address this challenge, twenty-first century museums must be willing to step outside their comfort zones. They must be willing to collaborate with communities and find new sources of information in order to bring their historic collections into conversation with local history. They must also be willing to take risks and rethink old assumptions about the purpose of museum exhibitions. This is not easy work, but it is the only way to fulfill our mission and ensure that the legacy of museums remains relevant for the benefit of all.

The Museum’s current and recent history exhibits offer a diverse selection of topics, themes and objects from our extraordinary collections. These exhibitions are a window into the rich complexity of our research and a reflection of our commitment to making history accessible for all.

Imaginary Creatures of Land and Sea

This enchanting exhibition traced the cultural and natural history roots of some of the world’s most enduring mythological creatures: dragons, griffins, mermaids, sea serpents, unicorns, and other fantastic beasts of our shared human experience. It included spectacular sculptures, paintings, and textiles from the Museum’s collection, as well as historical and contemporary books and engravings.

Horses: Power and Grace

This exhibition explores the deep and continuing relationship between humans and horses. It reveals how these amazing animals have changed warfare, trade, transportation, agriculture, sports, and many other aspects of life.

Intersecting History

This collaborative exhibition, part of our History Responds initiative, brings together the work of several museum partners to create a more holistic and inclusive narrative on race, justice, and public memory. It includes landscape paintings by the renowned Cherokee artist Kay WalkingStick in conversation with highlights from New-York Historical’s 19th-century Hudson River School collection.

This sweeping exhibition of more than 700 objects, including outstanding works of art from museums across the country and around the world, reveals how cultures have decorated and embellished the bodies they inhabit. This exhibition showcased both cultural invention and individual artistry through ancient and modern body art practices such as tattooing, piercing, henna, and scarification.