This blog is related to the AHRC Research Network The Cultures of Preservation. From 2010 to 2012 taxidermists, artists, historians of art and science, curators and London-based institutions such as the Natural History Museum, the Hunterian Museum and the Grant Museum of Zoology collaborated for two workshops and a conference. It has been the aim to consider the hybrid status anatomical and zoological specimens, for instance pickled organs or mounted skins, with regards to their aesthetics and to their cultural and political significances.
On this growing platform, which has been conceptualised by Petra Lange-Berndt and will continue after the network has stopped its activities, you can encounter the favourite specimens of participants. So far, among the treasures are a Grizzly Bear Chair, Grandma Carolyn’s Carp, or a Hand Mummified by Mesmerism, as well as displays from museums around the world.
I hope that this community will florish and that more enthusiasts will join over time: Please get in touch if you want to contribute to this collection or join the mailing list.