The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

Field Museum Unleashes Natural Disasters

By Jess D'Amico in Arts & Entertainment on May 20, 2008 7:30PM

2008_05_nature_tsunami.jpgThe Field Museum has been on a roll lately with their temporary exhibits. First it was Mythical Creatures, which blew us away with its artist interpretations of our favorite monsters and legends. And Friday the Field will open Nature Unleashed: Inside Natural Disasters. In the wake of the Myanmar Cyclone and the China earthquake, this exhibit definitely has our attention.

Nature Unleashed illustrates the power of destruction through bent and mangled objects from the ruins of Pompei to a tree staked with a metal post from last year's 200 mph tornado in Greensburg, Kansas. The earthquake section includes an interactive map showing the tens of thousands of earthquakes that occur every year, and a "stomping ground" where you can create seismic waves. You can also digitally create a volcano, that erupts on a screed; we've always preferred the homemade science project kind actually.

Nature Unleashed emphasizes that these disasters, volcanoes, earthquakes, tornadoes and hurricanes will always be around, but what matters is how humans have adapted to deal with the threats. Tom Skwerski, the project manager for the exhibit, told the Tribune that "part of the point of the exhibit is to say that we can't stop these events from happening, so we have to find ways to live with them."

If you'd like to help the thousands made homeless or injured by the Myanmar cyclone or the China quake, you can contact the Red Cross, UNICEF or a number of international aid organizations.

Image of the Chennai tsunami via Kaushal Karkhanis