English Sparrow Taxidermy Class with Divya Anantharaman
Date: Sunday, April 10th
Time: 12-7 p.m.
Admission: $195 (includes all materials for use in class, and complementary museum admission for the day. Students go home with their own finished piece, and the knowledge to create their own pieces in the future.)
Experience Level: Beginner to Intermediate
Limited class size of 8 people
In this workshop, we will cover all the basics and specific techniques applicable to small bird taxidermy and the "fancywork" that goes into creating a successful mount. As cute as they are, English sparrows are considered an invasive species in the US. This class will cover their nuanced anatomy, and their historic and symbolic significance as well. We will also cover the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and other applicable laws for working with birds and legally obtaining specimens
This intensive class will be extremely hands on, covering everything from proper skinning, fleshing, degreasing/washing, tumbling and grooming feathers, to the dynamics of classically built bird bodies, dealing with bird necks, cleaning and wiring wing bones, and preserving or re-attaching feet. We will pay special attention to fitting custom made forms (students have the option of making a form with wrapped body or a carved form), creating a stable armature, hidden stitches, and how to arrange feather patterns. We will discuss and use various carding techniques and drying set ups tailored to the individual poses of each bird. Students will have the option of mounting their bird on a flat block, dowel, or branch.
Students will follow along as the instructor works, seeing the techniques in action, with plenty of individual attention. Due to the delicate nature of bird skin, it is ideal that students have had previous taxidermy experience, or come prepared with a good measure of patience. Reference photos for finished standing, sitting, and flying poses will be provided for use and inspiration in class via tablet or smartphone. Students will go home with their creations, and instructions for maintaining their pieces (keeping feathers clean, ideal drying set-ups, etc). Each student will leave class with a finished piece, and the knowledge to create their own pieces in the future. It is advised that students bring a bag or small box to transport their finished pieces.
Divya Anantharaman is a Morbid Anatomy Museum Taxidermist in Residence and a Brooklyn based artist whose taxidermy practice was sparked by a lifelong fascination with the intersection of natural mythology and science. With a combination of self and professional training, she has found her calling in creating sickly sweet and sparkly critters. Winner of a Best in Show trophy and Best in Category ribbon at the GSTA taxidermy show and competition, her work is on display in the Chamber of Wonders at the Walter's Art Museum, and has been profiled in numerous publications as varied as National Geographic, The NY Times, The Cut, Vice, BBC Science Radio, and on hit Discovery/Science Channel TV show Oddities. She is also a member of the G.S.T.A. (Garden State Taxidermists Association) and regularly competes in regional taxidermy shows. You can find out more at www.friendsforevertaxidermy.com
Also, some technical notes:
We use NO harsh or dangerous chemicals.
Everyone will be provided with gloves and sanitary equipment.
All animals are disease free.
All animals are ethically sourced- nothing was killed for this class. Animals used in this class are discards from the feeder/pet food industry, naturally deceased, or discards from the food service industry.
Tickets are non-refundable unless the event is canceled.
Please do not bring any raw dead animals with you to the class.
Morbid Anatomy Museum (View)
424 A Third Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11215