The specimens used in the 'Butterflies' series are all genuine, having been carefully collected after having died from natural causes. I source specimens only from England, where the butterflies have found themselves after emigrating from across the world. This is evident in the vast variety of species used. Butterflies are fragile and delicate creatures. Antennas, veins, and legs structure and connect to the main body. Tiny particles of pigment make up intricate colours and patterns on the wings. If a human hand were to touch the inside of the wing, the colour would simply wipe away. When the butterfly dies, it closes its wings and it is impossible to see it’s actual colour. By injecting a specific point in the body that connects to the veins, I am able to slowly re-open the wings, and reveal their true colour. I carefully select and mix specific pigments to make up a background setting for the insects, which in effect emphasises the varying shades and tones found on the butterfly wings.
My moral beliefs fuel my practice of ‘ethical taxidermy’. Other forms of taxidermy usually breed and farm specific species of butterflies, which are then gassed and killed in a controlled environment, ensuring limited damage and perfect (unrealistic) symmetry. On the contrary, I am drawn to the idea of each specimen having a slight imperfection, celebrating the idea of individuality in nature. In this case, I believe imperfection is perfection.
‘Butterflies’ supersedes finality with eternity, capturing and demonstrating a moment of absolute harmony.
Ethically sourced specimens, glitter, resin