Taxidermy evolved out of the tanning trade, whose practitioners preserved the skins of animals for use as clothing and blankets. In the early part of the 19th century, some of the first so-called trophy animals were crudely stuffed with scraps of fabric by upholsterers. Later in the Victorian Era, the art of taxidermy as we know it today evolved, pioneered by, among others, Carl Akeley, who worked at the Milwaukee Public Museum, the Field Museum in Chicago, and the American Museum of Natural History in New York.
Although Akeley was one of the leading innovators of taxidermy, excelling in the realistic mounting of mammals, later in his life he would reject the practice of bagging animals such as gorillas just so they could decorate a museum diorama, let alone a hunter's study. By the end of his life, Akeley had devoted himself to protecting these creatures—Africa's first national park was established in 1925 in no small part due his efforts.
Today, collectors of taxidermy have a range of animals and pieces to choose from. Gameheads are perhaps the most well known form of taxidermy. These include zebras, kudu, and oth...
In the United States, the practice of mounting deer heads is very common, especially if it's a buck with a full rack of antlers. Complete animals known as full mounts tend to be of smaller species such as bobcats and fox, as well as skunks and raccoons.
Mounted fish is another popular taxidermy type. Birds from peacocks to pheasants to roosters mount well, too, as do quail and falcons.
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Where to Shop for Props: Freak Show Posters, Taxidermy, MoreRacked NY, May 20th
This month the store is themed to look like a nautical/surfing getaway, so we've outfitted the space with everything from vintage fishing rods and fish taxidermy to rare surf boards, mini boats, hammocks, beach towels, and fishing nets. Even the...Read more
Polly Morgan: The taxidermy artist talks llama rides, eyeball scarves and how ...The Independent, May 18th
Taxidermy is part butchery, part sculpture Once you peel back the skin and see the body beneath, there lies a whole new world. By knowing animals, I now know myself, how I am put together, and understand the lumps and bumps under my own skin...Read more
POTTER OUTDOORS: Bagging a buck started Emery on the road to taxidermyEvansville Courier & Press, May 18th
Gradually, Emery's work improved enough that he entered two deer mounts in the 1994 Illinois State Taxidermy Competition and won two second-place awards. In 1995, he got another second in a higher category of competition. The following year, Meder...Read more
SCC wraps up taxidermy conference todayMount Airy News, May 17th
DOBSON — Surry Community College wraps up one of the largest taxidermy conferences in the United States today at the school's Dobson campus. The conference is also the only educational-based taxidermy conference sponsored by a community college...Read more
PHOTOS: A look inside the taxidermy lab at The Natural History Museum89.3 KPCC, May 17th
On the fourth floor of the museum is a temperature controlled taxidermy lab with no windows—that keeps the skins from fading in the sunlight. Death masks line the walls. Thousands of reference photos lie in drawers, and a full-sized Corriente cow...Read more
Northland Taxidermy cashes in at world championshipSault Ste. Marie Evening News, May 16th
Proving his massive haul of ribbons, plaques and awards from the 2013 Michigan Taxidermist Association State Competition in March was no fluke, Chippewa County's Randall Desormeau went up against the best in the world this past weekend in Springfield...Read more
Radomir Franz, Czech Taxidermist, Earns Global Attention (PHOTOS)Huffington Post, May 15th
A leopard with acupuncture-like needles on its face and body, to keep the skin tight, in Radomir Franz's taxidermy shop, in Sakvice, Czech Republic, Thursday, May 2, 2013. Franz is one of central Europe's most sought-after experts in the field _ and...Read more
Faux Taxidermy Is A Surprisingly Chic Decor Element (PHOTOS) - Huffington PostHuffington Post, May 9th
Faux taxidermy, or "fauxidermy" as it's been termed, has become a popular trend in interior design -- and it seems like it's sticking around. We won't argue that displaying, er, animals who have seen better days on our walls may be a little barbaric or...Read more