Mastodon Monday To Skin Saturday: This Week’s Happenings At HMNS

September 24, 2018
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Lecture – Facing the Past – Cases in Forensic Sculpture by Amanda Danning

Skulls for Facial Approximation. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

Forensic sculptor Amanda Danning performs facial reconstructions on skulls whose true appearance is unknown. She has worked on the most exciting anthropology finds in North America as well as contemporary criminal cases. Danning’s captivating presentation will combine history and technology, forensics and art–wrapped-up in brilliant visuals with powerful story telling.

Nationally recognized, Danning’s works have been featured in numerous books, articles and television programs. Over 100 of her sculptures are on display in the United States, including the Houston Museum of Natural Science.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018 – 6:30 PM

Early Bird to 9/17 – Members $10, Tickets $16.


Regular price starting on 9/18 – Members $14, Tickets $20

Behind the Scenes Tour of the Pall of Paleontology: The Age of Man: Primates and Humans

Because the Morian Hall of Paleontology is too large to tour in one evening, we are bringing back this popular series that covers the hall section by section with James Washington–now expanded to 6 sessions. All sessions are Wednesday evenings at 6 p.m.

As the Ice Age began, the Primate order produced australopithecines, which is considered the halfway point on the journey from ape to human. In our final section of the Morian Hall of Paleontology, see how the human form evolved with the sophistication of our intellect. Compare early primates to Homo sapiens sapiens–us modern humans, noted to be very very smart. (Homo sapiens was first used to name early human species. Modern humans were christened Homo sapiens sapiens because our giant brains and intellect were far greater than our early human ancestors.) The last stop of the tour is the hunting grounds of the Clovis People, brave and clever folk who invented the mammoth-killing atlatl.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018 – 6:00 PM

Tickets $25, Members $15 per session


Purchase entire 6-session package by July 11th to receive discount pricing: Nonmembers $130, Members $70

Behind the Scenes Tour of The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes

Take advantage of a dark, quiet night when the Museum is closed to the public to explore “The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes.” Instead of a traditional tour, docents will be scattered throughout the exhibition to provide you with intel and clues.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018 – 6:00 PM

Tickets $42/Members $27


Lecture – The Evolution and Meanings of Human Skin Color by Nina G. Jablonski

Variation in human skin color has fascinated and perplexed people for centuries. Biological anthropologist Nina G. Jablonski will explain how scientists now know that skin pigmentation has been a highly changeable trait in the 200,000-year history of modern humans–a trait used to define human races. Jablonski will delve into the science of skin color–both biologically and socially. She will explain how the evolution of human skin color is one of the best examples of natural selection acting on the human body, and is a good example of an evolutionary compromise.

Nina G. Jablonski is a leader in the worldwide fight against racism. Book signing following lecture.

This lecture is co-sponsored by The Leakey Foundation.

Thursday, September 27, 2018 – 6:30 PM

Early Bird to 9/19 – Members $10, Tickets $16

Regular price starting on 9/20 – Members $14, Tickets $20


Princess Bride (1987)

September 28

While home sick in bed, a young boy’s grandfather reads him a story called The Princess Bride. PG

98 min | Adventure, Family, Fantasy

Educator Maker Lab: Beyond Basic Butterflies

Aquire new skills and take your butterfly lessons beyound adaptations by learning how to pin a butterfly, create class specimens and start a small space butterfly garden.

Saturday, September 29, 2018 – 8:00 AM

Tickets $30/Members $25


Family Class – Skin We Are In

Saturday, September 29, 2018 – 9:00 AM

Running Time: 1 hour

Free with Museum Admission | Hosted at Houston Museum of Natural Science

When we meet someone, one of the things we notice is the color of their skin. But what can someone’s skin color tell us about them? Despite what some people say, your skin means very little! Inside we’re all the same. In a celebration of the glorious human rainbow, anthropologist and biologist Dr. Nina Jablonski will explain why humans have different skins, and how people’s thinking about skin color has changed throughout history.

Book signing of her new children’s book “Skin We are In” will follow the presentation. This lecture is co-sponsored by The Leakey Foundation. Recommended for ages 13 and up. FREE with Museum admission.

Class – Insect Mounting: Turning Arthropods into Art

Calliphora hilli Portrait, Austin’s Ferry, Tasmania, Australia. Author: JJ Harrison. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

Insects are fascinating and beautiful creatures that dominate almost every habitat on Earth. With their spectacular array of sizes, shapes and colors, they can make an interesting and unique memento that can last a lifetime. In this class, Cockrell Butterfly Center Entomologist, Erin Mills, will walk you through basic techniques including collection, identification, relaxation, pinning and mounting. Whether your interest in insects is scientific or artistic, you are sure to enjoy this class! Supplies and Insects for pinning and mounting will be provided, but you are welcome to bring your own as well.

Saturday, September 29, 2018 – 9:30 AM

Tickets $44/Members $34


Lecture – Volcanoes, Life and Energy by Cin-Ty Lee

A small eruption of Mount Rinjani, with volcanic lightning. Location: Lombok, Indonesia. Author: Oliver Spalt. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

Early Bird to 9/24 – Members $10, Tickets $16

Regular price starting on 9/25 – Members $14, Tickets $20


Authored By Chris Wells

Adventure is my middle name. Well… actually it’s French. Literally, it’s Christopher French Wells. But the spirit of adventure lives in me, and has always inspired me to go out and seek new experiences. I’ve traveled to Europe, Mexico and South America, as well as few places in the U.S. I’ve seen different places with different cultures, learned some things about humanity and about myself in particular. My goal is to lend my unique perspective, carved out of my own triumphs and tragedies, fears and fancies encountered during my years of college and international travel, to the other great voices of this blog. Hopefully to the enjoyment of our readers…

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