Taxidermy Art

Dutch artist Noortje Zijlstra works from her loft studio in an old deserted school overlooking a working class suburb in The Hague - creating "dead animal" art. As seen at her recent Rotterdam Festival of Contemporary Art exhibition, Zijlstra, 28, uses taxidermy as her chosen medium to re-create animals as extreme fusings - fashioning a freakish twist from a traditional practise to shock and even revolt the viewer. From multicoloured sugar coated mice, to a white rat with wooden stilts as legs. A stuffed squirrel with a test-tube mounted down its throat which functions as a flower-holder, or dove's head mounted on a shuttlecock. Then there's "Drumstick" - a chick leg on a wooden stand covered in feathers. SHE obtains the animals she uses for her art from friends (and friends of friends) who find them on the road, street or in the woods. She says: "Lots of people think of me immediately when they see a dead animal. Also, I have a friend who works at "staatsbosbeheer" (forestry commission) who, also, gives me animals sometimes. Subjects that motivate her work includes humour and a touch of cynicism alongside a wide range of issues, from: a broken heart, to how we deal with animals and the food industry. The results can be in the form of an object, installation or photograph. She says: "The food industry often features in my art. I don't use dead animals to shock, rather I want people to think. My art has a lot to do with the concept that you are what you eat. And I am vegetarian." Zijlstra freely admits her work may not be to the taste of many observers. However, as well as the importance of the aesthetic, she hopes her art serves as a catalyst for conversation. She says: "The people who get angry with my work don't understand how I can be a vegetarian and skin dead animals. But the animals I use are deceased already or have been shot by people with perfect knowledge of flora and fauna, and they kill these animals because it's needed. For me it would be more weird t - Netherlands - Wednesday 4th March 2015 (13 Pictures)


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Taxidermy Art
Photo credit: Mandatory Credit: Ninette Schostack


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Taxidermy Art
Photo credit: Mandatory credit: Rosa vd Wal


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Taxidermy Art
Photo credit: Mandatory credit: Rosa vd Wal


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Taxidermy Art
Photo credit: Mandatory credit: Emannuel


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Taxidermy Art
Photo credit: Mandatory credit: Emannuel


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Taxidermy Art
Photo credit: Mandatory credit: Ninette Schostack


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Taxidermy Art
Photo credit: Mandatory credit: Ninette Schostack


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Taxidermy Art
Photo credit: Mandatory Credit: Ninette Schostack


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Taxidermy Art
Photo credit: Mandatory credit: Ninette Schostack


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Taxidermy Art
Photo credit: Mandatory credit: Ninette Schostack


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Taxidermy Art
Photo credit: Mandatory Credit: Ninette Schostack


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Taxidermy Art
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Taxidermy Art
Photo credit: Mandatory Credit: Ninette Schostack


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