This was a tough dinosaur to identify. The dinosaurs from the Carnegie Museum’s DinoMite Days were all adopted and moved to their new homes years ago. A handful remain scattered around the city in public places and those are the ones we’ve included in this website. This one, however, was not a part of the original 100 artworks created to celebrate the Carnegie Museum’s 100th anniversary, and it’s not included on their website. We stopped in at the Carnegie Science Center to ask about it, but no one currently working there had any information on it. Not even its name.
We finally discovered that the DNAsaurus was created to commemorate His Royal Highness Prince Andrew’s 2003 visit to Pittsburgh. The Duke of York was in town to speak at a business conference and was going to visit the North American Headquarters of GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), a British owned pharmaceutical company. From a report by PRNewswire dated Oct 24, 2003, the local president of GSK said:
"When some people think about Pittsburgh, they still think about steel mills and smoke stacks. The reality is that those people are living in the stone age and those images should become dinosaurs. Pittsburgh is home to world-class health, medicine and biotechnology industries -- all of which, like us, need future generations to increase their understanding of and proficiency in science."
The article continues:
Throughout the summer, the Carnegie Museum of Natural History sponsored a public art display in and around Pittsburgh with nearly 100 dinosaurs gracing the city's street corners and parks. GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare worked with the Carnegie Museum of Natural History to have a special dinosaur created to commemorate The Duke of York's visit. The concept for the DNAsaurus was developed by GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare's in-house graphics department. Carnegie Mellon University professor and artist, Anne Lopez painted the dinosaur.PR Newswire (http://s.tt/1A5WF)
"DNAsaurus" features a collage of molecular structures, scientific diagrams, strands of DNA, images of U.S. and British flags, and yes, a squirt of Aquafresh(R) toothpaste on its tail. The design is representative of GlaxoSmithKline's science-driven mission to help people do more, feel better and live longer.
In 2002, His Royal Highness Prince Andrew had the opportunity to meet James Watson, one of the scientists who discovered DNA fifty years ago, at the original Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y. As a science-based company, GlaxoSmithKline sponsors and supports a number of initiatives worldwide to increase science literacy and to encourage more young people to pursue careers in science.
Squirt of Aquafresh on his tail.
Update 22 July 2014:
The Carnegie Science Center tells us that they call this guy
SciTeratops. We like that they’ve bestowed his own scientific name (genus) on him, but opted to leave his given name listed for the title.
The Dinomite Days dinos consisted of three different genus: Tyrannosaurus rex, Stegosaurus and Torosaurus. The fiberglass sculptures weigh in at around 200 pounds.
Update Dec 2015:
There've been some renovations going on behind the Science Center this past year. New walkways and landscaping changes and in the process (as you may be able to tell from the photos above) DNAsaurus was moved a few times. He disappeared completely and when we asked we were told it was temporary - until the work was completed. As of right now he still isn't back and we aren't sure if he's on display inside now or not.
Update Apr 2016:
We stopped by the Science Center and asked if DNAsaurus would be returning to his previous location. The folks inside said that they thought it was now inside the building somewhere, but they weren't sure exactly where. A quick lap around the building after we left and we were pleasantly surprised to discover that it had been relocated to the front of the building. Specifically, DNAsaurus is now along the sidewalk in the front corner of the Sportsworks building.