The Marchands: Scientific Illustrators
This is where art and science meet. Through the expertise of the Marchand family, many delicate and precisely detailed reconstructions of plant life (that can hardly be distinguished from real plants) were produced at themuseum. The only major difference is that these reconstructions render permanent what are otherwise ephemeral patterns of color and texture as plants each year grow through the four seasons. In this hall it is possible to see flowers in each of the three growing seasons all at once. In addition, three regional habitats are presented in dioramas illustrating the principal features of animal and plant life for the Atlantic coast, the northeastern beech forests, and the southwestern desserts.
More About the Marchands
Many of the spectacular exhibits that made the Buffalo Museum of Science world-renowned in the 1930s and 1940s were creations by the Marchand family, Henry and his sons, George and Paul. Since then, the Museum has undergone major changes, but some of the finest dioramas created by George and Paul remain.
George and Paul Marchand left the Museum in 1944, but Paul returned in 1965. During his 25-year hiatus, he perfected his specialty of creating scientifically accurate and artistically superb casts of flowers and mushrooms that made him famous throughout the museum world in North America.
He spent five years updating and improving exhibits and completely refurbished and extended the Hall of Plant Life, now The Marchands: Scientific Illustrators. In the exhibit, his meticulous workmanship combines artistry and science. Paul was a consummate naturalist who carefully researched his subjects.
His work is in the collections of museums in Springfield, Urbana, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Rochester, Westport, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Montreal, Smithsonian, National Parks system and New York Botanical Garden. The Buffalo Museum is the only repository of his insect models.