Exquisite Creatures Logo

Experience how awe-inspiring the natural world can be through the intricate design of its inhabitants. Examine the connections between art, science, and nature by viewing stunning three-dimensional displays of rare specimens from all over the world in Exquisite Creatures.

Opens October 5, 2019, for a limited time

Major Sponsor

 

US Bank

Supporting Sponsor

OCT

Catch a Glimpse of Exquisite Creatures

Christpher Marley's revolutionary approach to depicting the relationship between nature and art has been described by The New York Times as comprising “an elegant manifesto meant to nudge us off our couches and easy chairs and out the door."

Visitor Info


About the Exhibit


Fine Art & Science

How are biology and art connected? Christopher Marley’s creations demonstrate that art is an integral element in exploring and inspiring science. These collections give visitors an opportunity to learn about biodiversity, morphology, biomimicry, and taxonomy.

Biodiversity

This curated collection of art exhibits remarkable specimens and allows visitors to observe up-close outstretched parrot wings from Brazil, iridescent butterflies from Thailand, and intertwined octopuses from the Atlantic—all in one place.

Conservation

All subjects have been reclaimed or sourced in an environmentally sensitive manner. By preserving these organisms, Marley creates lasting tributes to their masterful design and profound beauty.

About the Artist

Christopher Marley is an artist, naturalist and bestselling author whose three-dimensional art features reclaimed and sustainably sourced animal, mineral and plant specimens arranged in precise, geometric compositions.

Raised in Oregon, Christopher Marley left home at 18 to pursue a career in fashion while studying art and design. During his travels, what began as an interest in enigmatic organisms and minerals soon became his life’s work: to broaden the world’s appreciation for the little-known and misunderstood artifacts of nature.

Possessing a brilliant eye for color, pattern, and texture, Marley explores the deep relationships between vastly different natural objects with the goal of deepening our relationship with the world around us. Marley maintains design studios in Oregon and Malaysia where he develops new methods to preserve natural artifacts of all kinds.

Marley’s three-dimensional art has been featured in numerous publications including Smithsonian.com, Scientific American, Wired, and Audubon magazine. His popular first book, Pheromone, was listed as one of the best books of the year by The Times (UK). His second book, Biophilia, was a New York Times bestseller.

Nature Lab

Design your own art, see a live scorpion, and more! The Nature Lab is a hands-on space that features artistic and scientific interactive activities.

This all-ages lab aims to inspire science and conservation through the recognition of art and beauty in nature. Excited to learn more? Stop by this OMSI-curated space located at the end of the Exquisite Creatures exhibit.

Sponsored by

 

FAQs

Questions about Exquisite Creatures?
Browse our FAQ's for info on the exhibition.


What are the dates this temporary exhibition will be open?

Exquisite Creatures will be at OMSI from October 5, 2019 to February 17, 2020.

How much does it cost to attend the exhibit?

General admission to the museum, which includes entry to Exquisite Creatures, is $15 for adults, $10.50 for youth (ages 3-13), and $12 for seniors (ages 63+).

Where can I purchase tickets to the exhibition?

Entry to Exquisite Creatures is included with general admission tickets which may be purchased online, at the OMSI front desk or by calling 503-797-4000

What hours are the museum and exhibition open?

The museum and exhibition will be open Tuesday through Sunday from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m plus Mondays when school is not in session. In addition, hours will be extended until 7:00 p.m. during select holiday periods. Please visit our Visitor Information page for the latest information on dates and times.

How long does it take to see the exhibition?

Individual visit times will vary, but most guests can anticipate spending 60-90 minutes to view Exquisite Creatures. Guests are welcome to stay inside the exhibition until the museum closes for the day if they wish.

Is photography permitted in the exhibit?

Absolutely! We highly encourage our guests to take photos of the amazing artwork so they can share with their friends and family (don’t forget to tag us: @omsi / #omsi). We just ask that guests don’t use the flash so as not to distract from the exhibit experience and respect others privacy. Videography, selfie sticks, tripods and monopods are not permitted inside the exhibit.

Are food and drink permitted in the exhibit?

Food or drink are not permitted in OMSI's featured exhibit hall.

How does Christopher Marley collect the animal specimens?

All vertebrates used in Exquisite Creatures are reclaimed. When organisms die in the care of institutions (aquariums, quarantine facilities, importers, breeders) or individuals, they can either be disposed of or they can be preserved and incorporated into lasting tributes to their masterful design. Occasionally, fishing vessel by-catch is a reclamation source. These are specimens that are unintentionally caught, usually by trawlers, and then are either discarded or sold to fish markets.

How does Christopher Marley collect the insect specimens?

The insects in the exhibit are sustainably collected. Responsible insect collecting offers an alternative to ranching or farming for often impoverished people with few options for sustenance other than working the land. When people are able to make their living from a healthy forest, the pressure to develop that land is reversed and those who might have joined industry that is destructive to habitat become champions of its preservation.

Does insect collection pose a risk to insect
populations?

Habitat contamination, development and host plant decimation pose the greatest human threats to insects. Insect collecting helps offer native people an incentive to preserve local habitats by helping them to make their living through the collection of a renewable, sustainable forest resource.