Recently, I had the chance to browse through an exhibition of Danielle Van Ark’s photo series “The Mounted Life“. I was struck by the humour, storytelling, and compositions portraying taxidermy in museum storage hangars around the world. She does a remarkable job of capturing the internal spirit and nature of these creatures, as if they awoke and found themselves suddenly stuck inside the husk of a giant, modern facility.
The attention to detail in each frame is captivating, as Van Ark masterfully captures the essence of these preserved beings. From the stoic gaze of a mounted lion to the delicate posture of a perched owl, every image tells a unique story. One cannot help but ponder the dichotomy between life and death, nature and artifice, as depicted in these compelling photographs. The exhibition serves as a poignant reminder of the fragile boundary between the living and the lifeless, inviting viewers to contemplate the mysteries of existence. Overall, browsing through Van Ark’s work is a thought-provoking journey into the realm where the past meets the present, and where the essence of life transcends the confines of time and space.