A Fantastic Beasts-Inspired Exhibition Is Coming To The Natural History Museum

Alex Landon Alex Landon - Editor

Fantastic Beasts

Hope the whale will be sharing space with Erumpents, Demiguises, and much more at Fantastic Beasts: The Wonder of Nature.

Go to the Natural History Museum on any old day, and you’ll find it to be a magical place – we are talking about human evolution, millions of years of history, and one very impressive escalator, after all. However, this winter, it’s about to get a touch more magical, for the museum have announced an upcoming exhibit named Fantastic Beasts: The Wonder of Nature. And yes, it’s got rather a lot to do with Harry Potter’s Wizarding World…

Fantastic Beasts
NHM scientists posing with an Erumpent horn. Credit: Lucie Goodayle

A joint collaboration between the Natural History Museum, BBC Studios, and Warner Bros, the exhibit marries the natural and the magical by displaying museum collections alongside objects from the wizarding world. That means tigers and Galápagos marine iguanas will sit alongside Erumpent horns and dragon skulls, in what amounts to the most ambitious exhibition the Natural History Museum have ever mounted. Like so many other exhibitions, it’s been delayed a few months by the pandemic, but will finally arrive on December 9.

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Whilst the Natural History Museum and Warner Bros evidently have quite the array of artefacts to draw on, they’ll also supplement the exhibition with spellbinding digital installations, and a look at the career of noted magizoologist Newt Scamander.

Fantastic Beasts
Photo: Jeff Spicer @ Getty

The experience is intended to “show how the natural world has inspired legends and stories that have enthralled generations”, according to Clare Matterson, the NHM’s Executive Director of Engagement. For instance, you’ll see how the jaguar’s ability to camouflage itself informed the wizarding world’s Demiguise, and compare the mating rituals of the peacock spider to those of an Erumpent. Meanwhile, the giant oarfish, also included in the collection, is thought to have inspired mythical sea serpents around the world.

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Visitors will leave charmed, entertained, and informed, with the final part of the exhibition devoted to conservation and protecting Earth’s abundant wildlife, which is in itself magical. It looks, to all intents and purposes, like an utterly unmissable exhibition.

Fantastic Beasts

Tickets to Fantastic Beasts: The Wonder of Nature will be going on sale soon, and you can be the first to know when they’re on sale by signing up here. The exhibition itself arrives on December 9, and in the meantime, best brush up on your Niffler knowledge, hadn’t you?

Also published on Medium.