If you’re lucky enough to be in Manhattan at Christmastime and you’re checking off a list of holiday sights to see, be sure to add the Origami Christmas Tree at the American Museum of Natural History, which is perhaps the most unique holiday tree in the city. The theme of this year’s 13-foot tree is Gems of the Museum, featuring 50 specially created gold-colored models in recognition of the ‘Golden Anniversary’ (50th Origami Tree) of this Museum tradition, which started in the 1970s. Among the more than 1,000 origami pieces decorating the tree are models of dazzling specimens from the new Allison and Roberto Mignone Halls of Gems and Minerals, “jaw-some” pieces inspired by the new special exhibition Sharks, and those depicting iconic Museum exhibits like the Blue Whale, Titanosaur, and Tyrannosaurus Rex. Produced in partnership with OrigamiUSA, the Origami Tree is delightfully decorated with hand-folded paper models created by local, national, and international origami artists. See it now through January 9th, 2022!
If you’ve even been to the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) here in Manhattan, you probably have a favorite wing or exhibit hall, because everybody does. Most people seem to favor the Dinosaurs, and while those halls are certainly worth visiting at least once, I think they are a little played out. And while I do enjoy the Hall of Ocean Life, which is mind-blowing, my very favorite part of the museum are the Halls of Gems and Minerals, and I will recommend and rave about them to anyone who will listen. So, it was a pretty big deal to me when I received news from the AMNH that they will undertake a complete redesign of these very popular exhibit halls, currently known as the Morgan Memorial Hall of Gems and Harry Frank Guggenheim Hall of Minerals, transforming the 11,000-square-foot space into a gleaming showcase for their world-renowned collection! Wow! Not only that, but they also invited me to attend a media briefing event at the museum to witness the “Unveiling of a dazzling 12-foot-tall, 5-ton new acquisition!” Very exciting!