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Ray Harryhausen’s dinosaurs go on display

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Since May 2011, we have been exhibiting selections from Ray Harryhausen’s personal collection outside our research centre. Today we reveal the final thematic display: Dinosaurs.

Ray Harryhausen with models from The Valley of Gwangi, 1969

I asked Toni Booth, our Collections Manager, about the latest Harryhausen install.

“While Phil, our documentation officer, continues to work his way through the thousands of objects that make up the Ray Harryhausen Collection in London, here at the Museum we have a new taster of the kinds of creations that lurk both within Ray Harryhausen’s mind and currently his home.

“Many long-deceased creatures have been brought back to life over his long career and chief among these are of course the dinosaurs. So gathered in the display area outside Insight: Collections & Research Centre, you will find a small herd of these prehistoric creatures.

Key drawing Brontosaurus sequence – cavemen attacking, One Million Years BC, Canal+, Ray Harryhausen, 1966, Courtesy of the Ray and Diana Harryhausen Foundation

“Described in the original trailer for One Million Years BC as ‘a moving mountain of flesh and bone’, the original armatured model of the brontosaurus will be on display alongside some other slightly less mountainous beasts.”

Pterodactyl and prisoners at stake, People of the Mist, Ray Harryhausen, 1982,
Courtesy of the Ray and Diana Harryhausen Foundation

Ray Harryhausen was the recipient of the Bradford Animation Festival 2010 Lifetime Achievement Award.

Ray was unable to attend the festival in person, but John Landis presented the award to Ray on our behalf, and we recorded this short film of the two in conversation.

Well, Bradford Animation Festival has come round again, and this year we’ll be awarding John Halas the BAF 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award. The daughter of John Halas and Joy Batchelor, Vivien Halas, will accept the posthumous award on her father’s behalf, and will be sitting on the BAF Jury to select this year’s award winners. You never know, we may just discover a new genius of the craft, to follow in the footsteps of the great Ray Harryhausen and John Halas.

The 19th Bradford Animation Festival begins on Tuesday 13 November; Dinosaurs will be on display until April 2014.

Written by Emma Thom

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