Sketching is always my first impulse, writing a distant second. Sketching is a means of thinking visually—on the page—and thoughts are generated as I watch a sketch unfold. The first mark is defining, raising many new opportunities for making the next mark, and new possibilities materialize while others fall by the wayside. The drawing process is a conversation between my imagination and the page, mediated by my hand, and that dialogue challenges me to respond.
2012 Insight Award Honoree; Senior Vice President of Exhibition at the American Museum of Natural History
David Harvey is an interpretive exhibition designer whose passion is creating compelling museum experiences for the public. As SVP of Exhibition, directing a team of more than 60, his most recent exhibitions at AMNH include Poison, Pterosaurs, Creatures of Light, Brain: The Inside Story, Traveling the Silk Road, and Mythic Creatures.
The Endurance: Shackleton's Legendary Antarctic Expedition
The Endurance: Shackleton's Legendary Antarctic Expedition was the most comprehensive presentation ever mounted to describe the epic story of the 1914 expedition led by Sir Ernest Shackleton on the ship Endurance.
In this comprehensive exhibition, natural specimens paired with cultural objects offer visitors a global view of the many aspects of pearls, the mollusks that produce them, and the cultures that have long prized them. Circular alcoves, grouped around a central core, each explore a particular theme, such as marine pearls or pearls in history. Visitors can move from the center in any direction to build information, layer by layer, like the form of a pearl itself.
The goal of this exhibition is simple yet incredibly ambitious: to give visitors a sense of Einstein's revolutionary ideas. Einstein described phenomena – travel close to the speed of light, time as the fourth dimension – that cannot be represented accurately as three-dimensional exhibit elements. These concepts, however, can be explained through text, graphics, and media. Typography, color, and line drawings link and harmonize different sections.
This is the most comprehensive exhibition ever presented on the ancient city of Petra, located in modern-day Jordan. It features approximately 200 artifacts, including architectural fragments and sculptures, ceramics, and decorative stuccowork. The challenge for this show was to evoke a powerful site without literally recreating it.
The exhibit design refers to the Victorian context of Darwin's work, with dark wood and brass cases, while incorporating a contemporary perspective. It moves back and forth from an ordered rectilinear world with decorous Victorian detail, for the sections focusing on Darwin's life, to curving organic shapes in the areas where discovery and science prevail. The section on the Beagle voyage is organized into little islands of content, and the pathway through the exhibit is evocative of the circuitous voyage itself.
The Hall of Human Origins is a permanent 9,000-sq.-ft. exhibit, presenting the history of human evolution from our earliest ancestors millions of years ago to modern Homo sapiens. In a first for an exhibition of its kind, the hall combines the latest in genomic science with up-to-date discoveries in the fossil record.