Is taxidermy Brooklyn's next maker movement? - Brooklyn


Sep. 20, 2016 10:03 am

Is taxidermy Brooklyn’s next maker movement?

The Guardian reports on the borough's fresh take on an old-fashioned hobby.

A taxidermy piece by Amber Maykut.

(Photo via Amber Maykut)

We’ve already seen Brooklyn blossom into a hub for urban farming. But now the back-to-nature movement is getting decidedly more macabre. The next burgeoning trend in the borough, according to The Guardian, is urban taxidermy.

The epicenter of this groundswell of interest is Greenpoint’s Atlas Obscura, the crowdsourced, millennial alternative to National Geographic. The company has hosted several events on the topic, including a 2014 taxidermy fair and is the site of an upcoming class on chipmunk taxidermy this Sunday, which is already sold out. Elsewhere in Brooklyn, in Gowanus, there’s the Morbid Anatomy Museum, which holds its own classes, in addition to its taxidermy exhibits.

What makes Brooklyn’s collective of taxidermists unique, aside from the urban setting, is its ethical bent. Amber Maykut and Katie Innamorato, the taxidermists featured in The Guardian‘s story, only use animals that have been killed for other purposes in their art. In other words, there isn’t an urban hunting movement afoot in Brooklyn. (Let’s hope it stays that way.) Instead, Maykut is seeking to position taxidermy as a part of the DIY movement.

“Her mice classes are a way to frame taxidermy as something cute and whimsical, not something related to hunting,” writer Olga Oksman noted.

MakerBots, Arduino boards, and…dead rodents? In Brooklyn, anything is possible. (We do have an abundant supply of mice and rats.) Plus, we gotta admit, some of Maykut’s work looks pretty cool.

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