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Fwd: Triassic/Jurassic Conference call for art & new date

I'm taking the liberty of passing this on from the vrtpaleo list as I suspect 
there are more artists here on the DML. DV

To all.

    We are interested in the possibility of putting on an art show
TRANSITION in association with the symposium of the same name to be held
in St. George, Utah March 15-17th. (see the attached announcement and
note the revised date, which was moved up a week to co-inside with the
college's spring break).

    We are also interested in knowing if any artists might be
willing to help out with art on the topic for the color guidebook we are
putting together?

    We will be looking for stuff covering the Late Triassic-Early
Jurassic Terrestrial world. The editors will be judging what can be
included in the final book, which will be full color glossy.  I think
anything on animals living during this interval or best yet reflecting
famous faunas (NA, SA, Africa, China, Europe) would be great. Depicting
non-dinosaurian animals would be considered just as pertinent. 

    We are also hoping to get people to attempt art that would
specifically depict the St. George track site as described below.

    The site where the conference will be held preserves a fantastic
series of track horizons on the shore of an ancient huge lake (Lake
Dixie covered southwestern Utah, while sand dunes covered the rest of
the state). 

    The lake preserves abundant fossil fish (small and large
semionotids, large coelacanths; ? Dipterus, and a pretty big hybodont
shark Lissodus n. sp. with crayfish, fresh-water horseshoe crabs and
other invertebrates (ostracods & conchostracans), when lake levels were
high. When the lake levels were low, stromatolites and algal mats
dominated as the lake went hypersaline.

    The shoreline supported large ripple-bedded sand bars and
mudflats, where large mud crack systems formed in the dry season. Large
and small theropods combed the coast looking for fish. our bones show
that our big beast is not Dilophosaurus and Megapnosaurus (=Syntarsus)
is known from these rocks. Other much less common beasts recorded on
this shore from tracks are small terrestrial crocodilians like
Protosuchus and tritylodonts (derived herbivorous synapsids). 

    Our working hypothesis is that the dinosaurs were out fishing
(like bears), perhaps during the semionotid breeding season, when the
fish might be concentrated in the shallows. The large theropods have
slender teeth with distinctive wear like spinosaurs.

    Dino tracks are still common in the shallow water of the lake,
where small therapod floundered in the long shore currents as they began
to be buoyed up (? `meter deep), while big theropods just stood there.
This is shown by hundreds of swim tracks oriented parallel to scour and
flute marks. Fine sand must have been being simultaneously being
deposited in the tracks as they were being made as indicated by the
highly detailed skin and claw impressions.  This is remarkable stuff
reflecting a unique behavioral track occurrence.

    At this point we are trying to get a feel as to how many people
might be interested in participating in this art show and see if any
artists would like to help out with the book. It is going to be nice
volume  (lots of great graphics and photographs) that will sell below
$25.00 as the state of Utah is interested in disseminating information
and not making a profit. Hence, they reasonably process of our various
paleontological publications.

Preliminary Announcement


March 15-17th, 2005
Dixie State College
St. George, Utah

Followed by the Utah Friends of Paleontology Annual Meeting - March
18-20, 2005

    The Triassic/Jurassic transition is a critical time in Earth
history, recording the origins and early radiation of dinosaurs,
pterosaurs, crocodilians, mammals, and several other significant
Mesozoic vertebrate clades.  Additionally, a major interval of faunal
stepwise extinction is recorded in both the marine and terrestrial
environments that may be linked to impact events, setting the stage for
the ascendance of dinosaurs to a position of dominance for the remainder
of the Mesozoic.  Current research in this area is dynamic with
important implications to a number of areas in paleobiology and
    A number of recently discovered fossil localities in a little
researched area of southwestern Utah that preserves a thick sequence of
rocks spanning the Triassic/Jurassic interval are proving to be a
catalyst for new studies on this time period.  In addition to
discoveries at Zion National Park and Grand Staircase-Escalante National
Monument, many of these discoveries have centered on the basal Jurassic
St. George Dinosaur Tracksite at Johnson Farm.  This remarkable new site
preserves an extraordinary series of track levels along the margin of a
Hettangian lake ("Lake Dixie") and has associated fossil plants,
invertebrates, fish, and dinosaur remains making it particularly
significant.  These discoveries, along with a new interpretive center
slated to open in the summer of 2004, provide an impetus to bring
scientists together to discuss terrestrial faunas across the
Triassic/Jurassic transition in a dramatic geologic setting unfamiliar
to most attendees in the warm palm tree studded desert of SW Utah.
    A proceedings volume to be published by the New Mexico Museum of
Natural History and Science, and a full color overview volume is planned
by the Utah Geological Survey for initial distribution to attendees at
the conference.  This volume will include short review papers on areas
of critical interest regarding the Triassic/Jurassic terrestrial
transition in various areas of the world, summary papers on these rocks,
and their preserved fossils in southwestern Utah. 

Preliminary Conference Program

March 22       Plenary Papers                               30 min.
March 23       General Conference Papers           20 min. each
March 24       Field Trip: Triassic/Jurassic Geology and Paleontology
in the St. George and Zion National Park areas

Conference participants may fly into St George, Utah directly, or
speakers may fly into Las Vegas, Nevada and then transported by
volunteers to St. George.
Conference participants are invited to remain for the Utah Friends of
Paleontology Annual Meeting, which will include additional afternoon
field trips on March 25 and 26.

Information on the St. George tracksite may be viewed starting on page
4 of Survey Notes v. 34, no. 5.
Sponsored by Utah Geological Survey, Dixie State College, City of St.
George, Utah Friends of Paleontology

James I. Kirkland Ph. D.
State Paleontologist 
Utah Geological Survey
1594 West North Temple, Suite 3110
P.O. Box 146100
Salt Lake City, UT 84114-6100

(801) 537-3307   FAX (801) 537-3400