Bringing Hominids Back to Life

Elisabeth Daynès has won the John J. Lanzendorf PaleoArt Prize in the category of 3-Dimensional Art, for her hyper realistic reconstruction of early humans. The Prize was awarded to this talented and internationally recognised paleoartist during the Awards Ceremony for the 70th Anniversary Meeting of the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology.

The Lanzendorf PaleoArt Prize rewards exceptional achievement in PaleoArt, depicting or sculpting paleontological subjects and fossils. Thanks to these artists, paleontologists can communicate their discoveries, and make them accessible to a larger audience.

The prize consisted of the following categories: Scientific Illustration, 2-Dimensional Art, 3-Dimensional Art and a special National Geographic Digital Modelling and Animation Award and is the most prestigious award for artists in science art related to paleontology

Elisabeth Daynès was awarded the PaleoArt Prize in the category of 3-Dimensional Art. With hundreds of anthropological sculptures, she has become a leading expert in the painstaking process of hominid reconstructions. A painter, a sculptor and an expert in comparative anatomy she combines scientific research, technological innovation and art, in order to bring our human ancestors back to life.

Daynès strives to create a unique and specific early human or pre-human using the scarcenformation left by the remains of fossils that might be thousands or even a million years old. “Lucy the Australopithecus” and “Flores the hobbit” she created with Prof. Bill Jungers, often described as her finest works, are part of the hundreds of her anthropological sculptures scattered around the world in leading museums along with Toumaï, Australopithecus, Paranthropus, Homo habilis, Homo erectus, Neanderthals, Homo sapiens, etc.

Her sculptures are famous worldwide and her studio, the Atelier Daynès, has been contacted by many European countries such as Germany, Sweden, Portugal and Spain, as well as many other countries, among which South Africa, Japan, French Polynesia, and Mexico. She increased her international fame in 2006 with the bust of Tutankhamen she reconstructed for the “The New Face of King Tut” exhibition. The exhibition devoted to the young Egyptian Pharaoh was a great success in Los Angeles and Chicago and the bust of Tutankhamen was then reproduced on the cover of 25 international issues of the National Geographic.

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