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Exquisite Creatures

Temporary Exhibition Gallery
$12 (Free for members, other discounts available.)
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About the Exhibition

Blue and purple butterflies and iridescent beetles laid out in a circular kaleidoscope pattern
Christopher Marley, Lambent Prism, 2020, butterflies, beetles 40 in. x 40 in. © 2024 Christopher Marley |

Exquisite Creatures is a dialogue with art, nature, and science that asks the question: what is it about the natural world that calls to us? Throughout the exhibition, artist and naturalist Christopher Marley reflects on humanity’s intimate relationship with nature, revealing its intricate beauty and diversity through three-dimensional works comprised of animal, mineral, and plant specimens arranged in precise, geometric compositions. Shown together, the works create an immersive environment which inspires wonder and fosters a desire to preserve the natural world.

Crystal Bridges welcomes guests to experience the connection between art, nature, and science, emotionally and aesthetically, throughout the exhibition. The museum will activate the show’s themes through nature and science-based programming and activities both inside the museum and outdoors across its trails and grounds.

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Ticket Options

$12 Adults General Admission

FREE Members, SNAP participants*, Veterans, and Youth 18 and Under

*SNAP participants, please call (479) 657-2335 to enroll for free entry to temporary exhibitions.

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About the Artist

Christopher Marley is an artist, naturalist, photographer, and author who uses preserved natural specimens as his medium. He grew up in the Pacific Northwest, immersed in nature from his earliest memories. During a decade spent traveling the world as a fashion model, Marley’s passion for discovering unfamiliar elements in the natural world became an obsession.

His work was born of a desire to share nature’s majesty in a way that inspires both the urbane and the nature aficionado equally. Marley believes that in the proper light, beauty is found in every organism and that the deeper our appreciation for the aesthetics of nature, the more eager we are to immerse ourselves in it and conserve it.

All of the vertebrates that Marley uses in his work are reclaimed after dying of natural or incidental causes. He has innovated techniques for a host of organisms that are not typically considered good candidates for preservation. He also utilizes insects that are collected or bred in an environmentally sensitive manner using a worldwide network of people and institutions that share his passion for nature.

Man smiling in grey shirt sits at table with color fish mounted on a white board
Christopher Marley

Marley’s work explores the deep relationships between vastly different natural objects and the love and unity we intrinsically feel with them and with nature as a whole. His first book, Pheromone, was named one of the ­best books of the year by The Times (UK). His second book, Biophilia, was a New York Times Best Seller.

Marley’s traveling museum exhibits have been experienced by millions of visitors in North America, Europe, and Asia.

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