Making of //

550 mio.

550 million years – this far scientists of the Stuttgart State Museum of Natural History can retrace the development of life and the world climate. From then to now five big mass extinctions were observed where 40% of all species disappeared for forever. Dinosaurs fell victim to the last mass extinction around 65 million years ago. Thus the cretaceous period came to an end and the Tertiary, the age of mammals began.

The area in the Stuttgart Natural History Museum that we have redesigned will tell the story of this extinction from October: From volcanism and asteroid impact to climate change and the great mass extinctions of contemporary history. There is an incredible amount of research, several ideas and prototypes, a whole lot of program code and a solid project management in this story.

In the past few days we have turned this story into reality. After a smooth installation there is now a new interactive area in the museum. Exhibits to touch, interaction, climate change an asteriod impact – but stop! We cannot give too much away yet. It will open on October 21st with an impressive but harmless star guest who will welcome the visitors to our exhibition.

However, there is one question of our history we can already anticipate, as it could not be more urgent: Are we today in the sixth great mass extinction? Since humans settled down around 2,800 years ago, a wave of extinction has been observed that is still increasing today. Although hardly any entire species are currently dying out, around one million species are threatened with extinction today.­