Rituals of Seduction: Birds of Paradise touring exhibition information

Rituals of Seduction: Birds of Paradise exhibition is available to tour

Blue Bird of Paradise flank and tail plumage

Blue Bird of Paradise flank and tail plumage
Photographer: Carl Bento © Australian Museum

This exciting exhibition asks visitors to consider the
notion that people are more like birds than we think; birds
and people use decoration and dance to draw attention to
themselves during courtship rituals.
We explore how these birds have evolved from their
closest cousins to an eclectic species where the males
have exaggerated and exotic features not seen in other
species, and whose only purpose is for attraction. These
birds are a fascinating example of sexual selection.
We also examine the close relationship between people
and birds of paradise. The notion that birds and people
are more alike is evident in dance, rituals, song and body
decoration adopted by Pacific islanders and inspired by the
birds, and in the affinity male islanders have with the male
There is also a strong conservation message in the
exhibition which considers threats to the New Guinea
environment and habitats of the birds.

Louise Teteris , Project Coordinator – Touring Exhibitions
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