WHAT: Oakland Museum of California
WHERE: 1000 Oak Street, Oakland
HOURS: Wednesday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and closed Monday, Tuesday
ADMISSION: $12 general, $9 seniors and students, $6 youth 9 to 17, children 8 and under free
MORE INFO: www.museumca.org
OAKLAND —- The Oakland Museum of California has opened its newly transformed Gallery of California Natural Sciences.
Visitors will experience the Golden State’s natural offerings like never before. Showcasing a fresh focus on California’s natural history, the threats it faces, and our relationships with nature, the reinstalled Gallery draws on the museum’s extensive holdings and community resources. This interdisciplinary gallery will feature relevant art and historical connections alongside repurposed natural science dioramas that merge new multimedia and interactive elements. Visit www.museumca.org.
In the reinstalled Gallery, visitors will experience seven real places throughout California that depict the state’s diversity of climate, geology, habitats, ecosystems, and wildlife, while exploring current research, contemporary issues of land use, environmental conflict, and conservation projects. Innovative displays present the fusion of world-class dioramas with emerging technologies, citizen science projects, and visitor contribution, enabling the new Gallery to tell the story of California’s amazing natural world through the voices of local community members and scientists of these regions, while providing an immersive and intimate experience of the individual habitats.
At 25,000 square feet, the vast gallery space is the only museum presentation of its kind to showcase a collective portrait of California’s rich biodiversity alongside human’s interaction with the natural world. These converged storylines are showcased to raise awareness of the state’s environmental pressures that call for a heightened need for environmental conservation and provide opportunities for visitors to become involved in the future of California’s environment.
The new gallery project — which has been seven years in the making — is led by a curatorial team that is guiding a group of diverse designers, scientists, artists, builders, and community members, each of whom has made creative contributions to the project. By incorporating different voices into the curatorial process through video interviews, co-creations with community groups, and citizen science projects, the Gallery stays true to OMCA’s dedication to developing innovative exhibition and programming strategies that set a new model for the way a museum engages the public. The result will be a Gallery that exists as a place for authentic individual voices, offering multiple stories and perspectives, and providing a forum for lively discussion and exchange of ideas about our state’s natural world.