Featured Exhibitions

The Harvard Museums of Science & Culture host a wide variety of public exhibitions. This page highlights an exhibition from each of the four HMSC museums. Please click on individual museum names for a complete list of exhibitions currently on view.

Scale: A Matter of Perspective

March 10, 2017

Image: farquhar globe for the Scale exhibit at the Collection of Historical Scientific InstrumentsOpening March 10, 2017 in the Collection of Historical Scientific Instruments, Scale: A Matter of Perspective examines the concept of scale and its power to transform perceptions of the world and our place in it. Featuring a wide selection of microscopes and telescopes from the Collection of Historical Scientific Instruments and an array of models, miniatures, and cultural and scientific artifacts from collections across the University, the exhibition will challenge visitors to make connections to the world in surprising new ways. 

Next of Kin: Seeing Extinction through the Artist’s Lens

December 17, 2016

We live in a time when an alarming array of plants and animals struggle to even exist in a world that is increasingly dominated and altered by an exploding human population. Showcasing the work of artist Christina Seely, in collaboration with Susannah Sayler and Edward Morris of The Canary Project, this exhibition presents a provocative and powerful new perspective on the biodiversity extinction crisis. Next of Kin: Seeing Extinction through the Artist’s Lens, uses special photography techniques, lighting and sound design, and specimens carefully chosen from the collections of Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology to generate an exchange between the viewer and animal kingdom and evoke empathy with our “next of kin”. On view at the Harvard Museum of Natural History.

Nasca Ceramics: Ancient Art from Peru's South Coast

October 1, 2016

Nasca artisans fashioned bowls, jars, and plates from coiled and modeled clay and painted them using 15 different mineral pigments - one of the most diverse palettes known in the Americas.  Presenting rich and colorful imagery of cats, foxes, falcons, people, and mythological beings, Nasca pottery is a captivating window into the beliefs and customs of this mysterious ancient people. On view at the Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology.

Recreating the Throne of Egyptian Queen Hetepheres

February 11, 2016

An interdisciplinary collaboration at Harvard University has created a full-scale reproduction of an ancient Egyptian throne belonging to Queen Hetepheres (about 2550 BC).  The chair’s materials are based on the ancient original: cedar, bright blue faience tiles, gold foil, gesso, cordage seating, and copper. This experiment in archaeological visualization is a triumph of reconstruction because the only guidance came from thousands of tiny, jumbled fragments and 90-year old expedition records. The reproduction chair is the centerpiece of the new exhibit, Recreating the Throne of Egyptian Queen Hetepheres. On view at the Harvard Semitic Museum.