Skip to main content

Department of State

The Hon. Tahesha Way, Lt. Governor and Secretary of State

New Exhibition Explores Importance and Uses of Tree Bark

Trenton, NJ - The New Jersey State Museum presents “Bark! Indigenous Cultural Expressions,” on view May 4, 2024 through January 5, 2025 in the Museum’s Riverside Gallery on the second floor. The exhibition features objects from the Museum’s Ethnographic collection, exploring indigenous cultural practices from the Pacific Northwest, South America, Pacific Islands, and the local Eastern Woodlands area. Learn how bark is harvested and crafted, and how these ancient traditions continue today. The exhibition is supported in part by the New Jersey State Museum Foundation.

Assistant Curator of Archaeology and Ethnography Karen Flinn and Curator of Education Beth Cooper organized the exhibition to present rarely seen objects from the Museum’s collection and help visitors understand the importance of bark to indigenous populations. According to Flinn, “The use of tree bark is global and ubiquitous, from prehistoric times to today. Indigenous communities all over the world harvest bark, using it as a source of food and medicine, to craft everyday objects and works of art.”

Activities for all ages will be available on select weekends throughout the run of the exhibit; dates and times will be posted on the Museum’s website. The text of this exhibition will be available in Spanish via a QR code and in a large print format.

The New Jersey State Museum is open Tuesday - Sunday, 9:00 am to 4:45 pm; closed on all State holidays. General admission is free. For additional information visit, like the Museum’s Facebook page (@NJStateMuseum), and follow us on X (njstatemuseum), Instagram (nj_statemuseum), Threads (nj_statemuseum) and YouTube (@newjerseystatemuseum1895.)

About the New Jersey State Museum
Located at 205 West State Street in Trenton, the New Jersey State Museum encompasses three buildings including a state-of-the-art Planetarium and holds over 2 million artifacts in its collections in Archaeology/Ethnography, Cultural History, Fine Art and Natural History. The New Jersey State Museum is a center for the exploration of science, history and the arts. We preserve and share stories that inspire curiosity and creativity for the enrichment of our communities. The New Jersey State Museum is a Division of the New Jersey Department of State.

About the New Jersey State Museum Foundation
The New Jersey State Museum Foundation was founded in 1968 as a non-profit 501(c)(3) to support the Museum's collections, exhibitions and programs through fundraising, volunteerism, advocacy and marketing. In recent years, the Foundation has received generous support from the PNC Foundation, NJM Insurance Group, Department of State/New Jersey Historical Commission, New Jersey Council for the Humanities, The Henry Luce Foundation, The Capstone Foundation and Princeton Area Community Foundation. The Foundation also operates the Museum membership program, as well as the Museum Shop, which sells merchandise related to the Museum's exhibitions, collections, and New Jersey history and culture. Proceeds support the New Jersey State Museum's collections, exhibitions and programs.


to top