Let’s face facts – taxidermy is cool. For centuries we’ve been visiting natural history museums to peer through glass cabinets at stuffed animals. They’re a testament to our fascination and desire to preserve nature and study it. Italian Photographer Andrea Ferrari’s ongoing project Wild Window addresses this superbly, documenting taxidermic displays in some of the world’s leading natural history museums, and bringing the wonders of the animal kingdom directly to us.
Yet Ferrari’s use of photographic language has a unusual effect. The washed out sepia tones moves these images away from performing as purely observational documents, allowing the off-kilter compositions, and carefully staged shadows to imbue the creatures with an illusionary sense of movement. As the camera flash reflects off their glass eyes, the lifeless, sculptural specimens seem to have been caught in a momentary glance back at us, as if to confront our urge to see and know the deep hidden secrets of the natural world.