Unfrozen in Time Brings Animals to Life

July 12, 2012

Sound designers Lydia Hunn and John Avarese

A new art installation brings the historic dioramas in North American Hall to life with all manner of lively sounds animals make and use to communicate.

The “music to the ears” of visitors as they enter the hall filled with bears, deer, birds, and other animals comes from actual recordings of animals in the wild. About 16 minutes long, Unfrozen in Time: Collective Voices of North American Hall was created by two Drexel University professors for the Academy’s yearlong Bicentennial and represents various life moments of the animals.

While visitors will be able to identify some familiar calls, they also will hear some unfamiliar, new sounds. “Voices” featured in this work include bobcats, pronghorn antelope, crows, Kodiak brown bears, sheep, muskrats, bison, and many more.

Just as it is impossible to see all these animals in such close proximity to one another in nature, visitors are given another exceptional opportunity as they are immersed in the sounds of these animals simultaneously. Detailed information about the animal sounds can be accessed by scanning a QR code on signage in the museum.

This innovative sound piece is yet another way the nation’s oldest natural history museum is enhancing the visitor experience as it celebrates its 200th anniversary. To learn about the artists and to see a list of the animal sounds visit the Unfrozen in Time web page.

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