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Jay Matternes
Jay Matternes
Jay Matternes
Jay Matternes
Jay Matternes
Jay Matternes
Jay Matternes
Jay Matternes

Jay Matternes

Paleoartist and Wildlife Painter

By (author) Richard Milner
With Ian Tattersall
Foreword by Mauricio Anton


Publishing 12th Aug 2024
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    • The first career-spanning volume on Jay Matternes (b. 1933), the influential paleoartist and wildlife artist who set a new scientific standard in the field
    • Matternes' accomplishments include his famous murals at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C.; numerous illustrations for Science, National Geographic, and Scientific American; and collaborations with eminent scientists like Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Louis Leakey
    • This book features beautiful colour reproductions of Matternes' paintings of dinosaurs, extinct mammals, human ancestors, African wildlife, and more
    • Also features never-before-published excerpts from Matternes' twenty-year correspondence with Dian Fossey
    • Authored by Richard Milner, noted historian of science and Associate of the American Museum of Natural History
    • Introductory biographical essay by Ian Tattersall, the eminent paleoanthropologist
    • Foreword by Mauricio Anton, one of the celebrated contemporary paleoartists influenced by Matternes
    Full Description

    The first career-spanning volume on Jay Matternes (b. 1933), whose scientific rigor and artistic skill set a new standard in natural history illustration.

    Millions have grown up inspired by Jay Matternes’ murals of extinct mammals at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History and the American Museum of Natural History. Others have savoured his depictions of human origins in such prestigious publications as Science, National Geographic, Scientific American, and Natural History. Matternes’ art has also graced popular books by such trailblazing wildlife scientists as Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Louis Leakey.

    Now, for the first time, the entire scope of Matternes’ achievement is revealed in this full-colour retrospective, prepared with the artist’s full cooperation and featuring many works never before published. Here are his depictions of living species, whose anatomical accuracy and vivid detail owe much to Matternes’ lifelong devotion to painting from nature: the wildlife of Africa, the birds of America, chimpanzees and gorillas, and more. Here, too, is his paleoart, meticulously reconstructed from the fossil evidence and ranging from dinosaurs, through the rise of mammals, to our hominid ancestors — including Matternes’ groundbreaking reconstruction of the 4.4-million-year-old hominin Ardipithecus, on which he laboured in secrecy for more than a decade. The highly readable text includes, among other special features, selections from the artist’s 20-year correspondence with the late Dian Fossey.

    Jay Matternes: Paleoartist and Wildlife Painter will be an essential volume not only for aspiring illustrators and paleoartists, but for anyone with an interest in the natural world and how we visualise it.

    About the Author

    Richard Milner is an anthropologist and historian of science whose books include Charles R. Knight: The Artist Who Saw through Time and Darwin's Universe: Evolution from A to Z. An Associate at the American Museum of Natural History, Milner has appeared on the History Channel, Discovery, and NPR, and has been profiled in the New York Times and Time Out New York. Ian Tattersall is Curator Emeritus at the American Museum of Natural History and a leading paleoanthropologist. Mauricio Anton is a celebrated paleoartist based in Spain.

    Abbeville Press
    Publish date
    12th Aug 2024
    World excluding USA, Canada, Puerto Rico, and Australia
    254 mm x 279 mm
    180 Pages
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