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The Crucified Sheep, Tattooed Frogs, and Crocheted Skeletons of a Rogue Taxidermy Fair in Brooklyn

Atlas Obscura at the Rogue Taxidermy Fair with a cruxified sheep by Tanis Meyer-Thornton (all photographs by Steven Acres, visit http://stevenacr.es to view more of his work)

Transforming cast off creatures from roadkill to vintage discards, some contemporary taxidermists are reimagining the art of preservation. This October 5, Atlas Obscura co-presented a Rogue Taxidermy Fair with the fellow Brooklyn-based Morbid Anatomy in celebration of a new book on “rogue taxidermy.”

Robert Marbury’s Taxidermy Art: A Rogue’s Guide to the Work, the Culture, and How to Do It Yourself, published by Artisan Books, examines new approaches to taxidermy, which are breaking off from the traditions of hunting mounts and natural history museums, while maintaining the careful skills of the practice. The Rogue Taxidermy Fair at the Bell House in Gowanus, Brooklyn, brought together local and regional practitioners including the Minnesota Association of Rogue TaxidermistsCaitlin T. McCormack who crochets skeletons contained in bell jars, Amber Maykut of Hoardaculture showcasing beautiful butterflies and tattooed frogs, Divya Anantharaman of Friends Forever Taxidermy with ethically-sourced taxidermy transformed with ecological specimens and beadery, and Daisy Tainton with anthropomorphic insect dioramas. 

Mike Zohn of Obscura Antiques & Oddities also brought to his booth a Ferris wheel of chipmunks that was once part of the defunct Dead Pals of Sam Sanfilippo housed in a funeral home in Wisconsin that included a whole cavalcade of critter taxidermy. Katie Innamorato of Afterlife Anatomy demonstrated for the crowd the careful process of squirrel taxidermy from specimen to detached skin, and the all-day event concluded with an incredible evening set by the Lucky Chops Brass Band (previously seen at our Cocktails in the Crypt evening) and a taxidermy trivia competition. Check out photographs from the fair below, and keep an eye on our events page for more unique adventures in New York City and beyond. 


Robert Marbury (at left), Atlas Obscura founder Dylan Thuras (at right), & the proud winner of the taxidermy trivia contest at center


Katie Innamorato of Afterlife Anatomy demonstrating squirrel taxidermy


Detail of the demonstration


Richard Santomauro Taxidermy


Peacock from Richard Santomauro Taxidermy


Divya Anantharaman of Friends Forever Taxidermy

Detail of the Friends Forever Taxidermy table

Robert Marbury & Daisy Tainton displaying an insect diorama


Curios from Daisy Tainton


Insect diorama by Ann Seymour 


Toad wallets from Mike Zohn from Obscura Antiques


Wet specimens and taxidermy cobra by Santomauro Taxidermy 


Bat skeleton by Laetitia Barbier of Morbid Anatomy


Diaphonized specimens by Katie Innamoratto


Fortune teller taxidermy diorama by Amber Maykut


Amber Maykut of Hoardaculture


A Ferris wheel of chipmunks, formerly part of the Dead Pals of Sam Sanfillippo, brought to the fair by Mike Zohn of Obscura Antiques & Oddities

Detail of the chipmunk Ferris wheel


Robert Kennedy Taxidermy’s display


Crocheted skeletons by Caitlin T. McCormack


Crocheted skeleton by Caitlin T. McCormack

The Lucky Chops Brass Band


Lucky Chops Brass Band

 

“Wear a Bear” booth by Katie Innamoratto

All photographs by Steven Acres, visit http://stevenacr.es to view more of his work.


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