The Ark Encounter and Creation Museum are now open daily! Note that dining, theaters, and other offerings have been enhanced to help you stay healthy.
What to know before you visit
I’m Stephanie, and I’ve been at AiG for four exciting years now. I’m involved with museum exhibit research, and I’m really pumped to tell you about some of the work our artists are doing. It’s especially fun for me to watch what our sculptors are doing now, so that’s what I’ve chosen to tell you about.
A couple of months ago my husband, Perry (who also works in this department), and I were given the challenging, but really cool, task of researching what 30 of the original animal kinds might have looked like. If you’re not familiar with the concept of “kinds”, check out “Zonkeys, Ligers, and Wolphins, Oh My!” for an overview of this important principle. Basically Perry and I had to take a list of 30 types of animals (oxen, horse/zebra, pangolin, sheep/goat, etc.) and research information on hybridization, classification, and characteristics of them to make educated guesses on what their ancestors looked like. The 30 animals are ones that were chosen to appear in the life-sized scenes of the Garden of Eden, post-Fall world, and the Flood exhibits in the museum’s walk through history.
Talk about a fun project! We found several surprises—for example, based on hybridization reports, it’s likely that the chicken and the peacock are from the same original kind! So we tried to determine the dominant characteristics that the ancestors would have probably had and passed that information along with lots of photos to the artists, who then began working on illustrations of these amazing animals. See some examples below.
Now we really get to see the fruit of all that labor—the sculptors are recreating the animals in 3D! They’re actually making them half of life-sized to speed up the process. Soon we’ll be acquiring a CNC router. We’ll be able to scan, three dimensionally, the smaller sculptures, then the machine will cut them out (life-size) in foam. Once they’re painted and texturized, the animals will be ready to go in the museum.
Carolyn, Stephanie, Travis, and Jesse must have the most fun jobs at AiG. They get to play with clay and create incredible things for the museum! Here are some pictures of the animals that they’re working on. God has really brought some talent to this team, as you can see!
Thanks for reading and keeping up with the museum progress! I hope you all get to come to the museum one day and see the finished product and remember the reason why the animals in the Garden of Eden are recognizable, but not quite like the animals of today!
We appreciate all of your prayers and support for the museum.