Public Events

‘Thomas D. Mangelsen – A Life in the Wild’ Exhibition Comes to Detroit Zoo

Renowned American nature photographer to speak June 19

The Detroit Zoological Society (DZS) will present “Thomas D. Mangelsen – A Life in the Wild” from June 19 to September 10, 2019. Located in the exhibit gallery in the Ford Education Center, the photography exhibition will be open during regular Detroit Zoo hours and is free with admission.


The exhibition features 40 award-winning photographs of renowned wildlife photographer Thomas D. Mangelsen. Included in the exhibition is Polar Dance, an iconic photo of two wild polar bears appearing to waltz in the Arctic. National Geographic called this image one of the most important of our time for getting viewers to ponder the consequences of climate change. Another favorite, Catch of the Day, is considered one of the most widely circulated wildlife photographs in history, and has been called “a monumental achievement in photography” for Mangelsen’s split-second capture of a spawning salmon.

“The awe-inspiring photographs in this spectacular exhibition provide insight into the beauty and drama of nature and wildlife,” said Ron Kagan, DZS executive director and CEO. “We are honored to be able to host this brilliant photographer’s work and share his influential pieces with Detroit Zoo guests.”

As one of the world’s most prolific nature photographers, Mangelsen is as much of a conservationist as he is an artist. He was named the 2011 Conservation Photographer of the Year by Nature’s Best Photography, placing his work in the permanent collection at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. He was also named one of the 40 Most Influential Nature Photographers by Outdoor Photography, and one of the 100 Most Important People in Photography by American Photo magazine. The North American Nature Photography Association named him Outstanding Nature Photographer of the Year, while the British Broadcasting Corporation gave him its coveted, prestigious award, Wildlife Photographer of the Year.

The public is invited to a special lecture and book-signing event with Mangelsen at the Detroit Zoo to kick off the exhibition on Wednesday, June 19, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. The photographer will discuss his life’s work advocating for wildlife across all seven continents. Tickets are $25 and available for purchase on the Detroit Zoo’s website under Events.

The Detroit Zoological Society – a renowned leader in humane education, wildlife conservation, animal welfare and environmental sustainability – operates the Detroit Zoo and Belle Isle Nature Center.  With an annual regional economic impact of more than $167 million, the Detroit Zoo in Royal Oak is one of Michigan’s largest paid family attractions, hosting more than 1.3 million visitors annually.  Its 125 acres of award-winning naturalistic habitats are home to 2,400 animals representing 235 species.  The Belle Isle Nature Center sits on a 5-acre site surrounded by undisturbed forested wetlands on Belle Isle State Park in Detroit.  It provides year-round educational, recreational and environmental conservation opportunities for the community.  For hours, prices, directions and other information, call (248) 541-5717 or visit detroitzoo.org.

Disclaimer: Blue Water Healthy Living is an online magazine located in Port Huron, Michigan. Our purpose is to promote healthy living by showcasing the Blue Water Area, its people, issues and surroundings. This online magazine is devoted to providing healthy living related stories, local happenings, and commentary. Often inspiring and uplifting, our stories come from our heart and soul to promote the enjoyment of a more fulfilling Blue Water Area lifestyle. The material on this web site is provided for informational and amusement purposes only and is not to be confused with any medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. The views and opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the opinions and values of Blue Water Healthy Living.

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