Events

    Members: Not on Display! Treasures of the Mineralogical & Geological Museum

    Location: 

    Harvard Museum of Natural History—Online

    Visitors to the Harvard Museum of Natural History are dazzled by the Mineral Gallery’s beautiful specimens, yet the gallery displays only a fraction of the entire collection.

    While each of the collection’s 300,000+ specimens has great scientific value, a subset also has significant commercial value. Join Curator Raquel Alonso-Perez for a virtual behind the-scenes visit to view specimens that, for security reasons, are not typically on display. You’ll see a rare opal in matrix from Mexico, tourmalines from the first pegmatitic discovery in the U.S., and crystalline gold, among...

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    "Every Pecan Tree": Trees, Meaning, and Memory in Enslaved People’s Lives

    Location: 

    Arnold Arboretum—Online

    This is the third lecture in the Arnold Arboretum's 2021 Director's Lecture Series. Tiya Miles takes up the pecan tree as inspiration for exploring the meaning of trees in the lives of enslaved African Americans. Using a family heirloom, slave narratives, oral histories, and missionary records, her talk underscores the importance of trees in the Black experience of captivity and resistance, ultimately revealing the centrality of the natural world to Black, and indeed human, survival.

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    A History of Path-Making at the Arnold Arboretum

    Location: 

    Arnold Arboretum—Online

    At the time of its founding in 1872, the land on which the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University is sighted was a patchwork of farmland and forest. As the Arboretum was planted, pathways were developed to lead people through the picturesque landscape. As the landscape developed, economies shifted, wars took place, and directors changed. Each of these factors subtly influenced shifts in the park’s path system. Join the Arnold Arboretum on Zoom with Jared Rubinstein as he reveals the layers of change in this beloved landscape.

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    Members: Discover Oceania with Ingrid Ahlgren

    Location: 

    Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology—Online

    Join us for a casual evening of conversation with the Peabody Museum’s Curator of Oceanic Collections. Ingrid Ahlgren stewards one of the largest and most historically significant collections in the U.S. from the Pacific Islands, Australia, and Aotearoa/New Zealand. Hear her share some of her recent work, including the exhibit Uncovering Pacific Pasts and the important roles that Harvard University and the state of Massachusetts have played in the history of Oceania. Ingrid will also discuss her upcoming collaboration with Pacific Islanders living in Utah.

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    I Heart Science: Tiny Creatures

    Location: 

    Harvard Museums of Science & Culture—Online

    Break out of the winter doldrums and welcome Harvard science into your home with the all-virtual I Heart Science festival lasting from Friday, February 12 to Monday, February 15. This day’s “Tiny Creatures” theme looks at bacteria, viruses, and other microbial creatures.

    During the live webinar, starting at 1:00 pm ET, meet live tardigrades, also known as water bears. Watch recorded videos featuring Harvard scientists who study bacterial resistance, ways to test for viruses, and how bacteria grow.

    At home, try your hand at making a water-drop microscope, comparing...

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    Racial Equity in Urban Climate Action

    Location: 

    Online—Arnold Arboretum

    Joan Fitzgerald, Professor of Urban Planning and Policy at Northeastern University, will build on key concepts in her new book, Greenovation: Urban Leadership on Climate Change (2020). She’ll discuss how cities are rethinking their approach to climate action by placing racial justice at the forefront. She’ll draw from recent experiences with Providence, Austin, and Oakland in creating participatory planning processes and new priorities for a just transition to a carbon-free society. She’ll conclude by discussing how the transition can be linked to jobs in the green economy.

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    Members: Digging Harvard with Trish Capone & Nam Hyun Kim

    Location: 

    Online Event

    Students have been digging up and learning about Harvard's past through the Harvard Yard Archaeological Project. Meet the Peabody's Trish Capone and current Harvard student Nam Hyun Kim as they talk about the objects they have found and the larger history of what has been uncovered in this long-standing dig on campus.

     

    To register, send an email to members@hmsc.harvard.edu. If possible, please include your member number. A...

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    What Old Chimps Can Tell Us About Healthy Aging

    Location: 

    Harvard Alumni Association—Online

    Humans are living longer lives than ever before and so it is critical to understand the process of aging. It has become increasingly recognized that successful aging is not just about physical health but also about our social lives.

    Chimpanzees are our closest living relative and also lead long and complex lives. In this talk, you’ll learn what chimpanzee aging can tell us about human aging.

    Learn more...

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    Observations on Urban Nature

    Location: 

    Arnold Arboretum—Online

    Peter Del Tredici, Senior Research Scientist Emeritus at the Arnold Arboretum, and Rosetta Elkin, Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture at McGill University, converse about the nature of urban environments. Peter will begin the program with a brief overview of the plant observations he makes in his book, Wild Urban Plants of the Northeast. Following this, Peter and Rosetta will discuss both ecological and design elements that come into play in the cities and suburbs that we call home. Up for discussion are the environments that humans intentionally and unintentionally...

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    Creature Feature: Animals from Ancient Egypt

    Location: 

    Online Event

    Creature Features, a new online series from the Harvard Art Museums, offers a chance for families with children ages 6 and up to explore magical creatures across the collections through close looking and curious exploration with museum staff.

    Join Egyptologist Jen Thum for an interactive, family-friendly look at animals in ancient Egyptian art and life! Participants are encouraged to download and color along with our free activity book, Coloring Ancient Egypt...

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    Painting Edo at the Arnold Arboretum: Japanese Black Pine

    Location: 

    Harvard Art Museums—Online

    Painting Edo at the Arnold Arboretum is a collaboration between the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University and the Harvard Art Museums, inspired by the exhibition Painting Edo: Japanese Art from the Feinberg Collection. Observing artworks from the exhibition alongside the living collections of the Arnold Arboretum, we invite you to marvel at the remarkable accuracy and spirit with which artists of the Edo period (1615–1868) rendered their botanical...

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    Astronauts: Women on the Final Frontier

    Location: 

    Center for Astrophysics | Harvard & Smithsonian—Online

    The first person who will set foot on Mars is alive right now. We believe this, but even if we're wrong we know the first crew to arrive there will look nothing like the ones that landed on the Moon fifty years ago.

    Our world has changed for the better, and ASTRONAUTS tells the story of the women who built this better world. The main character and narrator is Mary Cleave, an astronaut you may not have heard of. It's not because so many people have been to space; only a few hundred have! It’s because this graphic novel isn’t about fame. No astronaut you'll ever meet took the...

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    Wonderful Cambrian Beasts

    Location: 

    Harvard Museum of Natural History—Online

    Earth is home to a vast diversity of organisms that collectively define the modern biosphere. How did this diversity come to be? Javier Ortega-Hernández will discuss his approach to answering this question by studying organisms that lived more than half a billion years ago in the Cambrian Period (485–541 million years ago). By focusing on the earliest-known animals—some of the most versatile to ever exist—Ortega-Hernández aims to reconstruct the early evolutionary history of major animal groups and contribute to our understanding of Earth’s biodiversity.

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    Linda Shi, "Green Infrastructure Beyond Flood Risk Reduction"

    Location: 

    Online Event, Graduate School of Design

    This lecture explores whether it is possible to achieve both social justice and environmental sustainability in efforts to mitigate urban flood risk. The expanding scale of urban flooding under climate change has renewed interest in large-scale restoration projects that make room for water in metro centers. However, ecologically functioning green infrastructure – unleashed rivers, sprawling wetlands – is inconsistent with the current governance landscape of fragmented local governments seeking to maximize local land values and minimize affordable housing. Moreover, even...

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    Adversity, Belonging, and Survival Among Baboons

    Location: 

    Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St., Cambridge

    Join the Harvard Museum of Natural History for a public lecture with Susan Alberts, Robert F. Durden Professor of Biology and Evolutionary Anthropology at Duke University. 

    The social environment—both in early life and adulthood—has major effects on human health and survival. But how and why does the social environment get “under the skin” to also affect our physical health? Susan Alberts pursues this question by studying wild baboons in Kenya. Baboons, like humans, evolved as savannah dwellers. They rely on social relationships to solve problems and—like humans...

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    Photography with Chris Morgan

    Location: 

    Hunnewell Building, Arnold Arboretum, 125 Arborway, Boston

    Chris Morgan is fascinated by the patterns and textures in nature, the shapes of trees, and the movements of birds. He captures these beautifully in his photographs, which were on display at the Arnold Arboretum in the winter of 2019.

    In this program, Chris will discuss his photographic interests and methods in the classroom and then move outdoors to demonstrate his techniques. Class participants will be able to learn alongside Chris, evaluating views, debating camera angles, and considering focal points in order to shoot better images. Participants should bring their...

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    Voices of the Rainforest

    Location: 

    Harvard Art Museums, Menschel Hall, 32 Quincy St., Cambridge

    Voices of the Rainforest is an experiential documentary about the ecological and aesthetic coevolution of Papua New Guinea’s Bosavi rainforest region and its inhabitants. The film immerses viewers in the rainforest, making myriad connections between the everyday sounds of the rainforest biosphere and the creative practices of the Bosavi people who sing to, with, and about it.

    Following the screening, Steven Feld will discuss the film with Amahl Bishara, an associate professor of anthropology at Tufts University.

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    Native Woody Plant Materials

    Location: 

    Garden in the Woods, 180 Hemenway Road, Framingham

    Explore the vast variety of native trees, shrubs, and woody vines. Learn which species grow well in shade, which support local wildlife, and how to stagger plantings for continuous bloom, fruit production, and fall color. The class discusses growth characteristics, cultural requirements, and best horticultural uses. It begins with lectures and walks at Garden in the Woods in Framingham and includes a field trip to the Arnold Arboretum in...

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    Smartphone Photography: Capturing the Colors of Autumn

    Location: 

    Hunnewell Building, Arnold Arboretum, 125 Arborway, Boston

    Capture the drama of fall, when landscapes present a vivid array of colors and the palette is most striking. Professional photographer Nancy Katz will introduce fundamental concepts of landscape photography and then teach techniques for getting the best photographs from your smartphone camera. You will capture images in dynamic color and muted shades, then learn to enhance them using a host of editing tools provided in the Snapseed App. For best results, bring your smartphone and a commitment to completing the weekly homework assignments. Class will take place indoors and out.

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