Monday, January 19, 2015

Museum of Jurassic Technology and Center for Land Use Interpretation

At long last, the Museum of Jurassic Technology was open on a day that I could visit! I was not allowed to take photographs so excuse the minimal visuals.

I have wanted to see this museum for years and reading Mr. Wilson's Cabinet of Wonder increased my desire. I was very interested in the elements of display. One of the most distinctive pieces was a mole skeleton placed in a plexi-glass box on a purple satin "pillow." Resting on top was a small photograph of a living mole propped up against a piece of wood. The living and the dead (though both long gone) functioned as one.

Other highlights in the presentation include the viewing devices. There were wooden handled 3-D glasses and 10-12 microscopes to see miniature floral mosaics half the size of a dime. In other exhibits, old rotary phones were available to listen to more information about the objects.

The staircase featured stair dioramas in the wall. There were miniature holograms, a mouse sandwich, a rocket ship with living quarters and a small scale moon with a landscape that did not fully wrap around the sphere. There was a model of a pregnant woman's hands holding a dying creature which would insure her trembling for life. Carvings of religious icons in the eyes of needles were nearly as fascinating as a man barking like a coyote (maybe).

I  cannot wait to return and look forward to adding this to my Los Angeles must-see rotation.

[The bathroom at the Museum of Jurassic Technology (surely they won't be mad at me for posting that).]

Also on the my list was the Center for Land Use Interpretation. I was pleased to visit the mother ship (located next door to the Museum of Jurassic Technology) after calling their phone number twice from the Wendover, Utah outpost to gain access to the combination that would unlock the gallery. I may have learned about too many books to acquire in the gift shop. In late November, I finished Lucy Lippard's Undermining (top right) as part of the reading requirements for the new class I am co-teaching, Space, Land and Concept in Art of the American West. I spent last weekend dissecting Overlook (center) for a powerpoint presentation, learning more about their database than I had known previously.

This day was one of the most rewarding and inspiring art viewing experiences I have had in years. Here's hoping that happens with greater frequency.

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