I received an email from artist Kristen Alvanson about the "Concept Horror" opening party in London this Saturday. The exhibition accompanies the release of Collapse Magazine's horror-themed issue IV. The magazine and the show both feature contributions by Jake and Dinos Chapman, Keith Tilford, and Kristen Alvanson, among others.
Kristen sent me a brief description of her contribution, a photo series called Arbor Deformia, (top two images) in which she uses the teratological taxonomic writings of surgeon-to-the-kings and medical thinker Ambrose Paré, well known for his book Des Monstres et Prodiges of 1573 (bottom two images), as a point of departure. She writes:
...[my] visual essay Arbor Deformia discusses how anatomical or teratological taxonomies present us with a deformation produced in thought in its ongoing struggle to encompass the horror of nature's indifference to its classificatory desires. [The] photographs capture unfortunate creatures in already preserved form, as 'doubly-dead'; all-too familiar, but so repugnant as to oblige us to a discursive dissociation. [I] argue that these deformities and teratological entities therefore seem to breed conceptual monstrosities, out-of-control taxonomical systems as deranged as the beings they are designed to corral into rational discourse. Arbor Deformia, integrating the biological and taxonomical levels of this twofold teratologism, gives an inventive graphical solution to the twisted logics of Ambroise Paré's sixteenth-century classifications which combine anatomy with teratology.
If anyone is in London this Saturday, why not check it out? More infomation about the opening here. More information about the magazine and contributers here.