The Specimens

Jeremy Bentham: Auto-Icon

Auto-icon (for web)

Auto-Icon; or, Farther Uses of the Dead to the Living. A Fragment. From the Mss. of Jeremy Bentham (not published), 1832 (…) VARIOUS are the means by which animal bodies have been preserved for ages. Bruce speaks of the bodies of men which he found in the torrid regions of Africa: and Acerbi mentions the [...]

Submitted by: Jeremy Bentham | Leave a comment

Albino Wallaby, Natural History Museum, London


It is easy to overlook an albino wallaby in a black and white photograph, particularly when it has its back to the camera. Against a pale background and partially hidden behind a swallow, a duck, and a rabbit, the ghostly white blob could be mistaken for a mishap of nineteenth-century photography. But while the wallaby [...]

Submitted by: Rachel Poliquin | Leave a comment

Hubert Duprat: Costa Brava Coral, 1994-1998


The object on display in the vitrine in front of us – which looks at first sight like an abacus gone awry – consists of branches of red, precious coral (Corallium rubrum, Linnaeus, 1758) glued together with pellets of dried and compressed white bread. As much as I am tempted to write, ‘artist Hubert Duprat [...]

Submitted by: Marion Endt-Jones | Leave a comment

Future Nature

Karl Grimes: Reedbuck, c-print / diasec., 183 x 122 cm, 2003, Morris Collection

Through large scale photographs, light boxes and video, Future Nature, engages with the themes of retrieval and resurrection – bringing to light and into the light the objects and specimens previously hidden in dispersed spirit archives and research databanks. The work, begun in 2002, takes as its content the unique animal embryos and foetuses housed [...]

Submitted by: Karl Grimes | Leave a comment

Cardboard Chest of Starlux Extinct Animal Models, Grant Museum of Zoology

Z1250 Aurochs, Z1237 Platybelodon, Z1235 Uintatherium, Z1248 Synthetoceras and Z1251 Megatherium Starlux prehistoric mammals, Grant Museum of Zoology

It may seem odd for a curator of a zoology museum, surrounded by ‘real’ animal bodies to pick a series of plastic models as favourite specimens but I hope to demonstrate how these objects are worthy of a place next to the amazing specimens already highlighted by the artists, historians, curators and conservators of the [...]

Submitted by: Mark Carnall | Leave a comment