In celebration of the 500th admirer of Stormblood Curiosities on Etsy. It means a lot to me that 500 of the people who have visited my shop and enjoyed it so much, that they chose to follow it on Etsy!
And when exciting happy things, such as hitting even-numbered goals (In the hundreds?!!? Say what?!?!) I like to give things away to my Facebook followers.
Consider this your tumblr-exclusive pre-announcement that if you are a follower of the official Stormblood Curiosities FB page, then you will automatically be entered into a drawing to win some fantastical art.
More info, soon-to-come, my lovely oddies. Please share or reblog this post if you feel like you know some other lovers of the fantastically flabbergastable!
- Wax injected human left hand, Europe, 1831-1870. Wax has been injected into the arteries, veins and muscles to preserve the internal structure of the hand. This technique was perfected by Frederik Ruysch (1638-1731), a Dutch anatomist. The wax injection highlights the blood vessels that otherwise would be difficult to distinguish. Anatomical preparations such as this one were useful in an age when there was a lack of bodies available for dissecting. This arm may have been used as a teaching aid for medical students.
- Antique Vervet Monkey Paw.
- Galileo’s Finger. The middle digit from Galileo’s right hand is mounted on a marble base and encased in a crystal jar. The finger was removed from the astronomer’s body when it was exhumed from his unconsecrated grave and transferred to a mausoleum in a Florentine church in 1737. It is usually on display at Florence’s Museum of the History of Science. Galileo, who lived from 1564 to 1642, was condemned by the Church for teaching that the Earth revolves around the Sun and in 1633 was tried and convicted of heresy by the Inquisition. He spent the last nine years of his life under house arrest.
“Faking It: Manipulated Photography Before Photoshop” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City features 200 altered photos created between the 1840s and the 1990s. Techniques used to alter photos during this time include multiple exposure, combination printing, photomontage and retouching. The show runs from October 11, 2012 through January 27, 2013.
The Creepy Vintage Taxidermy of Walter Potter
Arguably one of the founding fathers of English Taxidermy, Walter Potter was born on July 2nd 1835 in the village of Bramber in West Sussex. Very little remains of this museum today and the actual site is now a house. Only a very small plaque commemorates this man’s achievements in this art form.
Walter used taxidermy to produce tableaux depicting groups of animals behaving as though they were tiny humans. Walter lived until 1918 (he suffered a stroke, from which he never recovered) when the ownership passed to his daughter and subsequently to his grandson who kept the taxidermy museum open in Bramber where it was a famous tourist attraction for many years prior to its final museum resting place at Jamaica Inn, on Bodmin Moor in Cornwall.
The most famous exhibit in Potter’s taxidermy museum is The Kitten’s Tea and Croquet Party. It has 37 little kittens having tea, or playing croquet, with onlookers and waitresses. Walter Potter shows great attention to detail, two kittens appear to be reading a time-table, another is brushing its hair. A social gathering of some importance seems to be taking place, a courteous young kitten is offering a plate of ‘mouse tarts’ to his neighbor.
Well. This is awesome.
Georgian Eye Jewellery; 1790-1820
“Eye miniatures came into fashion at the end of the 18th century. In France, where eye miniature seems to have originated, the eye as symbol of watchfulness was adopted by the state police for buckles and belts. In Britain it had a role as a love token, with some eye miniatures glistening with a trompe-l’oeil tear, or a diamond set to imitate a tear. Most eye miniatures are unsigned, due to the minuteness of the background, and often the name of the person whose eye is depicted is unknown.”
Carved wooden head of a Christian martyr, Europe, 1501-1600: From an abbey in the Champagne region of France, this carved wooden piece shows a Christian martyr who was beheaded. The head is unusual in that it is shown in accurate anatomical detail. The spinal cord, oesophagus (food pipe) and vertebrae are intricately carved and clearly visible. The teeth are made from ivory.