Stuffed, Stitched and Studied: A look at 19th Century Australian Taxidermy
Taxidermy has become popular with many contemporary artists since the British artist Damien Hirst burst onto the scene using several dead animals in his Natural History series in the early ‘90s.
As a practice, taxidermy can be dated to around the mid 1500s, when specimens were prepared for artists to paint, and used as decoys in hunting, but modern taxidermy only began around 150 years ago.
The Macleay’s exhibition focuses on the 19th century and the incredible resource of specimens that were bequeathed to the museum, and it also explores taxidermy’s relationship to the science of taxonomy in this period, which is concerned with the scientific description, identification, naming and classification of flora and fauna.
Image: Loris, Courtesy the Macleay Museum, University of Sydney
Interview I –
Interview 2 –
Interview 3 –