Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Cabinet of Curiosities

This is my cabinet of curiosities (Kunstkammer) installation in the studio...these cabinets were extremely popular in Europe during the Renaissance. I was collecting and assembling these long before I knew what they were called, but it seems artists and also wealthy Euro types in the 16th - 17th centuries have been avid collectors of all things natural and odd for some time. Along the same vein, Maria Sibylla Merian (1647-1717) did some amazing things for a woman of her time, including travel to Surinam and paint butterflies and plants at a time when women were not only discouraged but unable to pursue art the way we know it today. Interestingly, women were allowed to paint in watercolors, but not oils. I think I might have been in some trouble had a lived back then...

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