Booth Museum of Natural History thoughts on taxidermy

September 24, 2017

 We went to the Booth Museum in Brighton, this was a museum filled with taxidermy, butterflies and bones. Walking into the huge hall I was able to see hundreds of glass framed boxes arranged from floor to ceiling. Each box contained a stuffed dead animal skillfully manipulated to look as though it was alive, each box had a fake little habitat, a scene so the box appeared a snapshot of the animals life. After reading the description and history I discovered that each animal was killed for this purpose for being collected and kept. of course I found it fascinating to see these animals close up, but also darkly ironic knowing that they had all been killed to appear alive forever. there's something so distasteful about the practice of making something that is dead look alive and has it placed on the wall as a spectacle. It manages to go one further than the twisted relationship one has with an animal in a zoo. But as I walked to the very back of this big hall I came across the bone area, in this room I was confronted by hundreds of skeletons, now this is an entirely different reaction in me. Indeed the animal corpses here are still somewhat a sceptical but without the obscene effort to mimic the living now the viewer is able to take in the animal from a purely biological standpoint marvelling at the engineering in nature. I walked around looking at each label and description about what animal each skeleton came from, and then amongst the primates stood a human skeleton, it's description "Human, Widespread, Dangerous" after trudging through all the spectral/shallow taxidermy I found this oddly refreshing that this area  simply comparing the biological differences of species without any societal strings attached, hierarchal thinking or twisted puppetry. All creatures viewed with the same scientific eye. 

 

 

 

about 

Please reload

Recent Posts

May 12, 2018

Please reload

Archive

Please reload

Tags

Please reload