Gibraltar Museum Christmas Lecture this Thursday

The Gibraltar Museum annual Christmas Lecture takes place this Thursday, 7th December, at 7pm at the John Mackintosh Hall.

This year’s speaker is world famous Palaeo-Artist Mauricio Antón who will be delivering a lecture entitled 'Bringing Our Ancestors back to Life'.

The lecture is open to all and is free of charge.

Mauricio Antón has been a full-time palaeo-artist since 1987. He has worked on a wide range of fossil vertebrates, but mostly concentrates on the reconstruction of fossil mammals, with an emphasis on carnivores and hominids. In Spain he is largely known for his pioneering reconstructions of the hominids and environments of the Atapuerca fossil sites.

He has created artwork for museum exhibits worldwide, including among others the Museo de Ciencias Naturales de Madrid, the Florida Museum of Natural History or the American Museum of Natural History. A recent contribution is a collection of illustrations for the exhibition “The Cradle of Human Kind”, which opened at the Museo Arqueológico Regional de Madrid and has travelled to several museums in Spain to finally settle at Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania.

He has written and illustrated two books, “El Secreto de los Fósiles” (2007) and “Sabertooth” (2013); and has co-authored and illustrated many others, including “The Big Cats and Their Fossils Relatives”, “Evolving Eden”, and “The National Geographic Book of Prehistoric Mammals” (all three with Alan Turner); “Mammoths, Sabertooths, and Hominids” (with Jordi Agustí); and “Dogs: Their Fossil Relatives and Evolutionary History (with Xiaoming Wang and Richard Tedford). Other books with his illustrations include “The Chosen Species” by Juan Luis Arsuaga and Ignacio Martínez; “El Chico de la Gran Dolina”, by José María Bermúdez de Castro; and more recently, “Our Origins” by Clark Spencer Larsen.

He has illustrated and authored many popular articles in magazines such as National Geographic, Geo, Natural History and Muy Interesante.

He has also collaborated with the BBC and Discovery Channel in developing documentary films including “Wild New World”, “Sabretooth” and “Walking with Beasts”.

Mauricio’s artwork is inseparable from his research on the anatomy and adaptations of fossil vertebrates, especially carnivores and primates, which has been published in academic journals including among others the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, the Journal of Human Evolution, the Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Mauricio also explores the applications of computer graphic imaging and animation to paleoart, in collaboration with Madrid-based FX studio “The Fly Factory”. Their most recent production is “Bringing the Sabertooths Back to Life” a film that reveals the methodologies behind Mauricio's reconstructions of extinct animals and especially of the sabertooths.

For several years he has led an exclusive art safari, “Drawing the Big Cats” that takes place in Northern Botswana and where he teaches both the anatomy and adaptations of the felines and the techniques to draw and paint them.

Mauricio has a blog titled “Chasing Sabertooths” where he regularly contributes artwork and reflections about reconstruction and paleobiology in general.