Written by: Adrian Andulan Published on: August 14, 2021 at 11:21 PM PHT (GMT+8)
The Pokémon Co., the Mikasa City Museum, and the National Museum of Nature and Science, have joined forces for a special project that combines the fictional world of Pokémon with the real life study of fossils.
Dubbed the 'Pokémon Fossil Museum', the project is a special museum exhibit that uses real life fossils and prehistoric remains, and combines them with the lore of Pokémon in the hopes of making paleontology and education on fossils more accessible to children.
According to the official website of the Misaka City Museum:
"From popular game series "Pokémon", there are several known Pokémon that are restored from Kaseki (hereinafter referred to as "Kaseki Pokémon"). This exhibition will compare "Kaseki Pokémon" with "fossils and paleontology" found in our world, discover similarities and differences, and have fun learning about the science of paleontology. Let's take a closer look at the "fossils" of each world by visiting the exhibits with "Dr. Kaseki" in the world of Pokémon, with "Excavation Pikachu" to help"
The exhibit will tour different museums in Japan, starting with the Mikasa City Museum in Hokkaido. The Pokemon Fossil Museum will run in the Mikasa City Museum until September 20, before moving to its next home in Shimane Nature Museum of Mt. Sanbe in the Shimane Prefecture for autumn 2021. This will run until spring 2022, where it will then move to National Museum of Nature and Science in Tokyo, and then Toyohashi Museum of Natural History in Toyohashi, Aichi Prefecture in the summer of 2022.
The project is the work of senior researcher for the Mikasa City Museum, Daisuke Aiba. A self-proclaimed Pokémon fan, Aiba believed that Pokémon would be a good avenue to introduce the concepts of paleontology to children.
“The starting point came when I thought I could show children how interesting paleontology can be by using them as a gateway."
“Archaeopteryx, which had teeth and a tail, is said to represent a transitional stage between dinosaurs and birds, but Archen, an ancient Pokemon bird, captures these important characteristics well.”
Plans for the exhibits were made as early as 2019, but the start of the event was delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic. Earlier announcements for the event showed that some of the exhibits will include real life fossils of dinosaurs and fossil models of prehistoric Pokémon. Illustrations of Pokémon and their inspirations in real paleontology will also be presented.