“How do we know what we know?” It’s a heavy question to ponder on any subject, but one that really hits home when talking about our collective knowledge of creatures that haven’t walked the Earth in some 65 million years.
The Experimentarium’s new dinosaur exhibition, opening October 12, aims to get visitors young and old thinking about just how we’ve come to know – or think we know – so much about the ancient beasts.
‘Dinosaurs – follow the trail’ invites visitors to explore a prehistoric world complete with animatronic triceratops, ankylosaurus, stegosaurus, baryonyx, the mighty T-rex and more.
As most parents can attest, kids often go through a ‘dinosaur phase’. The Experimentarium’s exhibition allows children not only to see nearly live-sized, moving versions of the 'terrible lizards' they’ve come to love, it also allows them to be a paleontologist as they dig through rocks in search of teeth and claw fossils.
They can crawl around in a dinosaur nest looking for eggs and can follow in the footsteps of a tyrannosaurus rex. A 12-metre screen also allows them to see a video that shows how dinosaurs lived and how they became extinct.
But most of all, it allows – and encourages – them to use their fantasy and make their own guesses about how life among the dinosaurs would have been. After all, history shows us that what we currently know about dinosaurs isn’t what we’ve always believed. Up until the year 1900, for example, scientists were convinced that the stegosaurus had a second brain in its rear end.
“Knowledge is something we create,” Lisa Klöcker of the Experimentarium told The Copenhagen Post, as she gave us a sneak peek at the upcoming exhibition. “We want visitors to ask ‘what if?’ and think about what they are seeing, where it came from, and how big it is.”
‘Dinosaurs – follow the trail’ is produced by the National History Museum of London and will be on show at the Experimentarium from 12 October 2012 – 1 September 2013. More information about the exhibtion is available here.