Congratulations to Mike Zohn of the wonderful Obscura Antiques and Oddities for garnering the grand prize in the The Carnivorous Nights Taxidermy Contest, a Secret Science Club event held at Union Hall in Park Slope, Brooklyn, last Friday night. (The first two photos feature Mike and his winning entry--see his quote, following, for more information). Other (non-grand prize-winning) entries included Takeshi Yamada's Fiji Mermaid, an "Indian Corndog," a two-headed chick (above), and a "Rump Ape."
The judges of the contest included the American Museum of Natural History's collections manager for mammalogy Darrin Lunde; Robert Marbury, co-director of the Minnesota Association of Rogue Taxidermists; and Dorian Devins of WFMU and the Secret Science Club.
Here's what the champion has to say about the experience:
Ive been meaning to attend and enter this contest for 3 years now, and Im glad I finally did. The piece that I won with has been in my collection for about 10 years, and its one of my favorites. Its a Victorian shadowbox diarama from the 1880's depicting a winter scene of a cliff, covered in trees, glass icicles, snow and what appears to be 2 tiny polar bears. They are actual mounted specimens, made to look like polar bears. I believe they are in the weasel family, although one of the judges had thought they were arctic voles. I have since googled arctic voles, and I am positive they are not. Also, judging by the scale of the trees and icicles, as well as the pose of the animals, I am positive that it is supposed to be a representation of a larger scene, and not a 1:1 depiction of a smaller creature in its habitat. Apparently, the judges agree. The same judge who doubted my description, later made an announcement that he was mistaken and admitted they were some sort of weasel. I have also decided to have the winning entry on display at the store for at least a month so that It can be viewed by those who did not attend the contest, or for those who did and would like another look...
All images, care of "Dogseat's" Carnivorous Nights Taxidermy Contest" photoset on Flickr. Check out the rest of the images here.