Size: 15 H x 10 W x 1.5 in
Its dramatic yet delicate lighting is reminiscent of a Rembrandt portrait, teasing the limits of chiaroscuro style. A bone white antelope skull strikes out from the darkness which thinly caresses the form of dried roses perched over a stage built of handmade books, giving a nod to Dutch Golden Age painters like Pieter Claesz.
Its subject matter is an ode to the timeless study of nature and her endless cycle of birth, growth, death and re-birth. One can imagine seeing through time into the library of a grey haired ethnobotanist sorting through his collection of botanical illustrations, pulling out ancient tomes and blowing dust off the pages off his copy of Gerard van Spaendonck's "Velins du Roi". He clears his writing table, stacking old books with handmade pages into towers like the sedimentary rock piles of the west. He tops these paperback mesas with his prized antelope skull and moves his beloved taxidermy alligator to a safe resting place in this valley of parchment. Untitled 30 is a portrait of a small scene out of time and a reminder of its passage.
'Untitled 30' is part of the ongoing Veneration of Light collection which encompasses works of neovictoriana still life. Veneration of Light was inspired by the artist's own contemplation on the temporality of life through observation of its ephemera, focusing on botany, taxidermy, entomology, oddities and antiques.
Heather Allison's work has been featured internationally, and utilizes items from some of the world's most prestigious natural history and interior decor boutiques such as Paxton Gate, San Francisco, The Bone Room, Berkeley and Absinthe Taxidermy. Her own home is a salon of wonders filled with oddities from her travels and her relationships with adventurers, fellow collectors and artists from around the globe.