Art, Performances & Festivals
I Want My Mummy!
You’ll find a fascinating selection at “Mummies of the World,” the largest-ever exhibition of formerly living beings now on display at the California Science Center in Los Angeles.
The Mummies of the World exhibit is an astounding collection of both naturally and intentionally preserved human and animal mummies, as well as related artifacts from all over the globe. Its treasures include one of the oldest mummified infants ever discovered; the presentation of a mummified family; a German nobleman discovered in a family crypt; and Egyptian animal mummies, intentionally preserved to accompany royals for eternity.
Through a compelling blend of real specimens, hands-on science exhibits, and multimedia 3-D animations, this unique exhibition offers an extraordinary window to history. Visitors have an opportunity not only to see real mummies and ancient artifacts, but to use current science tools and techniques to explore who they were and how they lived.
The mummified baby in the above photo was among a group of 18th-century mummies discovered in a long-forgotten church crypt in Vác, Hungary in 1994. Michael and Veronica Orlovits, along with their son Johannes, were among those preserved by the cool, dry air and oil from the pine boards used to build their coffins.
Featuring a never-before-seen collection of 150 specimens from South America, Europe, Asia and Egypt, you’ll see how mummification, both natural and with an intentional process, takes place all over the world.
The sarcophagus mummy of an Egyptian man named Nes-pa-qa-shuti, in the photo above, was found in a necropolis at Akhmim, and important site in Egypt with ties to the royal families. He dates back to about 650 B.C.
South American mummies on display include a Pre-Columbian woman found in the Peruvian desert, dating back to 1400 A.D., a Chilean man found in the Atacama Desert, believed to be the driest desert in the world; and a woman and two children found in the Andes region.
The “Detmold Child” shown above, is a Peruvian child mummy that is in a remarkable state of preservation, radiocarbon dated to 4504–4457 B.C. – about 3,000 years before the birth of King Tut.
The exhibition includes interactive multi-media that demonstrate how current science tools enable us to study mummies in new, non-invasive ways.
“This exhibition represents an extraordinary blend of science and history – a great fit for the California Science Center,” says Jeffrey Rudolph, President of the California Science Center. “It’s a great example of how cutting-edge, hands-on science can give us a better understanding of both the past and the present, and of how nature and culture have come together all over the world. We’re excited to be the home of this world premiere, and for Los Angeles audiences to be the first to see it.”
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