Cabinet of Curios
With Halloween upon us, we were inspired to do a collection highlighting the phenomenon of curio collecting. Stemming from the 1500’s at the height of the Renaissance these ‘Wunderkammern’, or commonly referred to as curio cabinets, served as way of featuring beloved trinkets, souvenirs and oddities.
These collections highlighted the tastes of the individual collector, however, what separated theses objects from other tschotskes, was the connection of the objet to the ‘unknown’. These collections often featured skulls, odd creatures, medical mysteries and maps of locations untraveled.
This phenomenon has spread into the contemporary art zeitgeist as well. Most commonly known is Damien Hirst’s modern interpretation of curios with his sterile medicine cabinets, or his butterfly paintings working with the medical aesthetic of these cabinets. Another artist who features these exalted collections, is Joseph Cornell whose boxes featured various object d’art from taxidermied animals to the most modest of items like corks and string.