The Blaschkas’ Sculptures from the Sea

Press release - 24 June 2008

Weird and wonderful glass models are going on display at the Natural History Museum
at Tring

The Blaschkas’ Sculptures from the Sea

21 July – 30 September 2008

Squid, anemones and jellyfish carefully crafted in glass will be the focus of a new exhibition at the Natural History Museum at Tring this summer. The models were made by the Blaschka family in the nineteenth century and this is the first time in decades they will be seen on display. The spectacular creations still amaze scientists with their accuracy, yet the Blaschkas never passed on their
specialist techniques.

The Museum’s Blaschka glass models were originally used as teaching aids and were on public display. However, pollution damage, metal corrosion and salt migration over the past 100 years have made them very fragile. Three years of careful conservation work at the Natural History Museum in South Kensington mean a selection of the models are now stable enough to be transported to Tring
and exhibited.

Paul Kitching, Museum Manager at the Natural History Museum at Tring says ‘It’s a real privilege to be able to display these marvellous models. With their striking colours and spectacular forms, we hope our visitors will be inspired by these delicate glass creations, which combine scientific accuracy with
artistic flair.’

A series of children’s activities to accompany the exhibition will be running during the summer.
Events include Brilliant Blaschka Bookmarks, Clothes Peg Creatures and Fantastic Filtering Fanworms.

Visitor information

Address: The Natural History Museum at Tring, The Walter Rothschild Building,
Akeman Street, Tring, Herts HP23 6AP
Dates: 21 July – 30 September 2008
Admission: Free
Opening hours:
Monday–Saturday 10.00–17.00, Sunday 14.00–17.00
Access: Step-free access is limited to Gallery 1, the temporary exhibition gallery, the shop and Zebra Café. A virtual tour of the upper galleries of the Museum is available in the temporary exhibition gallery.
Visitor enquiries: 020 7942 6171


Notes for editors

• The Natural History Museum at Tring opened in the late 1800s to house the collections of Lionel Walter, second Baron Rothschild and offers outstanding examples of nineteenth-century taxidermy at its very best. The museum was bequeathed to the nation and became part of the Natural History Museum in 1938. The public galleries were modernised, but the fascinating character of the Museum has been retained.
• More than 100,000 visitors a year enjoy a glimpse into the fascinating world of a Victorian collector, where they can see a huge variety of wild, weird and wonderful specimens from across the animal kingdom – from armadillos to zebras.
• The site at Tring also houses both the stunning Rothschild library and the Natural History Museum’s ornithological collection, which has been based there since the early 1970s.