For Immediate Release

Sophie Nassif 412.456.3472
sophie.nassif@ketchum.com

  May 15, 2003

DinoMite DaysSM Dino Dozen Hatch at Carnegie Museum of Natural History
Twelve of 100 Dinosaurs Make their Dino Debut to Launch Jurassic Event

PITTSBURGH, PA, May 15, 2003 — Twelve of 100 decorated dinosaurs were unveiled today to officially launch Carnegie Museum of Natural History’s DinoMite Days, an outdoor public art exhibit of Jurassic proportions. Hand-decorated by talented artists throughout Pittsburgh and surrounding areas, these dinosaurs are just two weeks away from adding a splash of prehistoric panache to Pittsburgh’s parks, plazas and public streets.

A colorful combination of Tyrannosaurus rex, Stegosaurus and Torosaurus dinosaur replicas paraded into the museum’s Hall of Architecture accompanied by their artists and local school children, some of who also created and painted the reptiles. Together, they wheeled in twelve spectacular pieces of “DinoMite” art, ranging from dinosaurs featuring stained-glass windows to a gigantic steel sculpture.

“This parade marks the beginning of DinoMite Days and a ‘DinoMite’ era in Pittsburgh,” remarked Bill DeWalt, then-director of Carnegie Museum of Natural History. “DinoMite Days offers a fun and exciting opportunity for anyone interested in art, history, dinosaurs and the Pittsburgh region. It will also help raise awareness of the significance of Carnegie Museum’s collection of dinosaur fossils, the third largest in the world!”

“DinoMite” Migration
The first round of the 200-pound fiberglass dinosaurs will be installed May 29 through June 1, 2003, while the remaining dinos will be installed by July 1st. Most dinosaurs will be affixed to a base and will feature a plaque with the names of the “sponsaur” and artist.

A “Dino Map” will provide the locations for each of the 100 dinosaurs and will soon be available online at www.dinomitedays.org. The site also provides information about the artists, photographs of the dinosaurs, educational information about the history of dinosaurs and activities for children.

The public will also have an opportunity to view the “Dino Dozen” as the herd makes its way to PPG Plaza. They will be on display from May 17 through May 28 before these dinosaurs make their homes at their summer locations. This will be one of the only times people will have the chance to see all of these works of art in one place.

The dinosaurs will remain on display through the summer when they will be prepared for the gala auction on October 18, 2003 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. Each of the dinosaurs will be auctioned off at the event or online and the proceeds will benefit both the expansion of the museum’s “Dinosaur Hall” as well as a charity of the sponsaur’s choice.

The Dino Dozen
The twelve Dino Dozen artists who previewed their art include:

  • Jason Gotsch of Strongsville, OH. His T. rex entitled "Aerodynamic" represents a techno-pet blended with a sports car using plastic sheeting, stained glass and automotive parts;
  • Jennifer Zimmerman of Mt. Lebanon, PA, and Lauren Urbschat. “Florasaurus” is painted with flowers, butterflies and plants found at Pittsburgh’s Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens;
  • Phillips Elementary School. The students designed an “Alphabetosaurus” that bears unique versions of the letters of the alphabet;
  • Jen Urich of Pittsburgh, PA. Her Stegosaurus illustrates Pittsburgh’s abandoned steel mills through photographic emulsion;
  • Gary Mesa-Gaido of Morehead, KY. “Philipsaurus,” named after its inspiration, Philip Johnson's PPG building, is a truly unique dinosaur composed entirely of reflective glass and mirrors. Cutting the mirrors into different shapes, Mesa-Gaido then adhered each individual piece to the dinosaur’s fiberglass shell to create this glittering masterpiece;
  • O’Hara Elementary School. As one of three winners of the “Decorate a Dino” contest, these students created a T. rex resembling a ream of paper. Each piece of paper contains a subject taught at the elementary school level.
  • Shady Side Academy. The students and their art teacher, Scott Aiken, created the “Shady Sideosaurus” with hand-made tiles, representing Pennsylvania’s state fossil – the Trilobite, that covers the body of the Torosaurus and embraces themes about Pittsburgh and education;
  • JP Glover of Pittsburgh, PA. His Stegosaurus exhibitions coloration based on living wildlife;
  • Alexander Overby of Squirrel Hill, PA. As the youngest artist to participate in DinoMite Days, this 14-year-old’s Torosaurus entitled “Imagine That!” uses bright earth-related colors such as fire and water to illustrate possible causes of dinosaur extinction;
  • John Alexander of McKees Rocks, PA. His "Pittsburghius Architectaurus" details famous local architecture – existing on one side and extinct on the other;
  • Dave Klug of Pittsburgh, PA. His “T.Rex VP” shows the evolution of Pittsburgh from a blue-collar, smoke-filled city to a high-tech, white-collar giant of industry; and
  • Rick Bach of Pittsburgh, PA. His steel sculpture, “Nino,” weighs about 700 pounds and captures Pittsburgh’s transformation from the bones of its industrial past to its new vision.

Attendees also got an up-close look at James O’Toole at work on his partially completed dinosaur sponsaured by Astorino. He demonstrated the art of architectural design based on a da Vinci motif during the preview event.

“We are thrilled to work with such a group of talented artists,” said Susie Perelman, co-chairperson of DinoMite Days. “It is amazing what these individuals created through their designs. Each dinosaur personality will add pizzazz and color to Pittsburgh’s landscape, which is already so rich in culture. After seeing how wonderful these dozen turned out, we believe it will build excitement in the community for the other dinosaurs that will soon inhabit our city.”

More than 300 dinosaur eggs are also being decorated by local school children, designers and florists, and local and national celebrities. All of the eggs will be displayed and auctioned off at the October 18th gala, which will officially end the DinoMite Days program. A “Community Day” will occur the following day, providing the public a chance to visit all of the dinosaurs one last time in one location before they find their way to their new homes.

Sponsaur a Dinosaur
Approximately 20 of the dinosaurs that will go on display are still available for “sponsaurship.” Sponsaurs select a design, decide where the work of art will be displayed throughout the summer and choose a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization to receive half of the proceeds once the dinosaur is auctioned on October 18, 2003, at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. The remaining proceeds will be used for renovation and expansion of Carnegie Museum of Natural History’s “Dinosaur Hall.”

About Carnegie Museum of Natural History
Founded in 1895, Carnegie Museum of Natural History ranks among the six largest natural history museums in the United States, with more than 20 million specimens, objects and artifacts. The museum is the world's third-largest repository of dinosaur fossils and contains one of the world's greatest collections of publicly displayed dinosaur skeletons, as well as one of the foremost collections of gems and minerals. The museum is a distinguished research institution and a dynamic, family-friendly destination.

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