Visions of Lost Worlds: The Paleoart of Jay Matternes (Hardcover)

Visions of Lost Worlds: The Paleoart of Jay Matternes By Matthew T. Carrano, Kirk R. Johnson, Jay Matternes (Illustrator) Cover Image

Visions of Lost Worlds: The Paleoart of Jay Matternes (Hardcover)


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A lavish showcase of paleoartist Jay Matternes's spectacular murals and sketches

For half a century, the artwork of Jay Matternes adorned the fossil halls of the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. These treasured Matternes murals documenting mammal evolution over the past 56 million years and dioramas showing dinosaurs from the Mesozoic Era are significant works of one of the most influential paleoartists in history. Simultaneously epic in size and scope and minutely detailed, they also provide a window into the study and interpretation of vertebrate paleontology and paleoecology.

Visions of Lost Worlds presents these unparalleled works of art, and also includes the sketches and drawings Matternes prepared as he planned the murals. Known for his technical genius and eye for detail, Matternes sketched from skeletons in museum collections and added muscle, skin, and fur to bring mammals and dinosaurs from prehistory to vivid life. This book offers a close look at these works of art, a peek inside the artist's process, and an examination of the works' impact and legacy.
MATTHEW T. CARRANO is Curator of Dinosauria at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. He studies the evolutionary history, functional morphology, and ecology of dinosaurs. KIRK R. JOHNSON is the Sant Director of the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. He has authored several books including Cruisin' the Fossil Freeway. JAY MATTERNES is a renowned paleoartist whose work is in the collections of the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History and the American Museum of Natural History, and has also appeared in National Geographic, Time-Life Books, and more.
Product Details ISBN: 9781588346674
ISBN-10: 1588346676
Publisher: Smithsonian Books
Publication Date: October 22nd, 2019
Pages: 236
Language: English
"These gorgeous depictions of life during different eras, covering the evolution of dinosaurs and other creatures over the past more than 50 million years, are entertaining and informative to look through, bringing animals who lived long ago to 'life.' The murals trace the evolution of different groups of mammals over time, and the murals’ huge size manages to both cover a large area and include fine detail. Because these pieces of art were made several decades ago, they also demonstrate how scientific knowledge and understanding can change over time. [...] This artwork is so beloved that those in charge deemed it important to document them, in full and in great detail, in this wonderful book. If you’re a fan of ancient life, or love animal and plant art, then Visions of Lost Worlds: The Paleoart of Jay Matternes is for you." – GeekDad 

"A beautifully produced love letter to Matternes’s palaeoart. Written by the museum’s Curator of Dinosauria Matthew T. Carano and director Kirk R. Johnson, in close collaboration with Matternes himself, this large-format art book offers an unparalleled look at these murals and the artistic process of making them. [...] A large part of each chapter shows blown-up sections of the mural, revealing details that are easily missed. This highlights, for example, Matternes’s love of painting animal faces and feet. Furthermore, Matternes has contributed a huge number of sketches and studies from his archives, showing the painstaking work that went into each animal shown on the murals. On many of the sketches you will find the original handwritten notes, thoughts, and corrections that Matternes jotted down as he was working. What is especially sweet is that the size of their reproduction here allows you to read almost all of them." – Natural History Book Service