Thursday, 27 June 2013
Nothing Taxing about Taxidermy
I love taxidermy. I know that sounds strange and would put a lot of people off but I do, I like it. I like skulls and antlers and skins. I have a cow skin on my floor and a springbok on a cushion and piano stool. the piano stool is especially feting as the springbok skin I bought for it was a male and thus had a beautiful white Mohawk down his rear which now sits up punk-like in my home.
The artist Julia deVille is a favourite. I love her work and visited her collection in a gallery some time ago. My pooch Koko came with me and she had a marvellous time with the stuffed kittens and deer and pigs and ostrich in the exhibition. She did seem a little confused as to why they didn't move...
For me taxidermy takes on the quality of children's book characters. We are willing to anthropomorthize animals for children and have them don clothes and do human things but to have them in our home is somehow wrong? We imitate animals in our children's toys, but we can't accept a real one dead?
I love that these animals have not died and gone away. They have remained with us, become something we value rather than lay as waste. There lives go on in our worlds, our homes and become cherished possessions for us.
I would love to have a raven, Poe like in my lounge room to stare into my soul in my darker moments or a companion to chat away to as I bake. I feel it is a charming way of immortalising life not a morbid way of celebrating death and I see nothing wrong with making animals our companions.