Scientific Sculptures of the Evolution of Human Faces

Sahelanthropus tchadensis

As part of the Safari zum Urmenschen exhibition (translated as Safari to Early Humans) at the Senckenberg Natural History Museum in Frankfurt, Germany, researchers used forensic technology to reproduce the evolution of the human head, spanning over millions of years. The controversial series of models, highlighting 27 molds of human ancestral faces, were carefully constructed based on discovered skulls, teeth, and tiny bone fragments that date back to about 7 million years ago.

The meticulously sculpted heads are the anthropological products of years of excavation in Africa, Asia, and Europe; thoroughly researched by scientists at Senckenberg Research Institute. Each face tells its own story about the lives of humans in their respective era, including: “where they lived, what they ate, [and] their likely cause of death.” The ancestral gallery presents a look at mankind’s physical evolution that has been turned into a video depicting the gradual shift in facial features, which can be viewed below.


Australopithecus afarensis


Australopithecus africanus


Paranthropus aethiopicus


Paranthropus boisei


Homo rudolfensis


Homo ergaster


Homo heidelbergensis


Homo neanderthalensis


Homo floresiensis

via [thinx, Discovery, Dan Petrovic]



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