We look forward to seeing you on June 24th at 6:45 p.m. Due to a private event, the Natural History Museum will be closed that evening. However, we are delighted to have the special opportunity to gather in the Commons of the Smithsonian Castle instead, which is not only a beautiful space, but one that includes many surprising examples of Mr. Rhymer's taxidermy.
We encourage you to take a walk through the Natural History Museum’s Hall of Mammals before the event, where many of Rhymer's (and his father’s and grandfather’s) stuffed creations still delight millions.
Please bring any pictures or questions you may have about the perserved animals in the exhibit to share at the program.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Customer Service at? 202-633-3030 during regular business hours.
Before he retired, Paul Rhymer worked as a Smithsonian taxidermist, just like his father and grandfather before him. He once spent three solid days stitching a 15 foot giraffe. He gave a faded panda a makeover, stuffed a giant squid, and reconstructed the skull of an orangutan specimen that arrived without a skeleton. The Smithsonian no longer employs a full-time taxidermist, but ironically, taxidermy is experiencing a renewed surge in popularity, thanks to cable television’s reality shows like Science Channel’s Oddities, Animal Planet’s American Stuffers, and AMC’s Immortalized, for which Rhymer is a judge. Rhymer is not at all surprised by this. He says he knew taxidermy was cool all along—a compelling combination of science, art, conservation, and gee-whiz effects.
Follow along as Rhymer tells stories and answers questions during a walk through the Natural History Museum’s Hall of Mammals, where many of his (and his father’s and grandfather’s) stuffed creations still delight millions.
What led a professional Smithsonian taxidermist to stardom on reality TV?