The rythm of Wildbirds, Dinosaurs and Whales

The rythm of Wildbirds, Dinosaurs and Whales

At the bottom of a prehistoric sea the Swedish duo Wildbird and Peacedrums wrapped up this years Frost festival in Copenhagen, once again documenting the long coming re-emergence and reunification of the sciences and arts, as integral partners in the human condition. So it was that in amongst the skeletal remains of whales and dinosaurs Mariam Wallentin and Andreas Werliin performed in a sea of light provided by Jacob Kvist; transporting the audience to another world and another time.

Whilst the Natural History Museum in Copenhagen hosts the world’s largest skeletal collection of Whales, they have until recently been missing that most ubiquitous of museum items – a dinosaur! Not so anymore, thanks to a generous donation by the Obel Family foundation, they now have Misty.

In November 2013 Sotheby’s in London auctioned off one of their more unusual pieces – a 17 meter long, 3,5 meter Long Neck. Misty fetches a £½ million and is sold to a secret buyer, who later turns out to be the Zoological Museum in Copenhagen.

So imagine yourself back at the concert, listen to the heavy rhythms, and half close your eyes. At the edge of a river bed are a group of giants, the kings and queens of this vast landscape, munching away at the ferns, shrubs and giant cones on the trees. They have long necks or sauropods of the genus diplodocus. A flock of fully-grown males and females more than 25 meters long and weighing up to 20 tons. The oldest are almost 100 years old.

Their surprisingly small noses at the end of a seven or eight meter long necks vacuum clean everything edible from the ground and up to five meters. The necks with unprecedented flexibility sweep elegantly from side to side in elegant, fluid motion until everything within reach is consumed. Then the four-legged eating machines move off with resounding thuds a few steps further into the wilderness.

Art induced time travel. It doesn’t get better than that.

PS In 1696 when we humans first really began to take an interest in dinosaur remains, a fossil hunter in England found a large round fossil which he promptly named Scrotum humanum, because in his eyes it was clearly a giant testicles from a humanoid giant. Today we know that it’s a femur from a Megalosaurus. Pity – I prefer the original conclusion.

The rythm of Wildbirds, Dinosaurs and Whales.

Photo: Politiken