I think I must be subconsciously attracted to artwork and interior decor that features animals. We've got rabbit egg cup holders, squirrel candlesticks, swan sculptures, monkey lamps, and artwork featuring a menagerie that includes butterflies, dogs, cows, goats and more.
I guess it's no surprise then that I discovered, and fell in love with, the work of Sebastian ErraZuriz. Born in Chile, raised in London, and based in New York, ErraZuriz's 'functional sculpture' is thought-provoking and intriguing.
I was especially taken with his Bird Chandelier, which delicately combines 50 taxidermy birds among the crystals of a chandelier.
I have reservations about taxidermy in many instances, but I believe that taxidermy of ethically sourced animals, where the animals have died of natural causes, can be very beautiful and evocative - providing a lasting reminder of the life of a unique creature. Admittedly I don't own any taxidermy myself, but I certainly appreciate its value.
This chandelier brings back very fond memories of an adventure Justin and I had in Nicaragua a few years ago. I'd read about an island paradise in Lake Nicaragua, populated with artists and wild exotic birds that were so friendly they were almost tame. Of course we had to find it!
The Solentiname archipelago is a cluster of 36 islands, with a total population of less than 1,000 people. We visited Mancarrón, the largest of the islands, and the only one with accommodation. It was indeed an untouched paradise; perfectly sleepy, lush, and colorful.
We were invited into the homes of a number of locals who showed us their artwork, and we bought a collection of hand-painted, hand carved wooden birds, inspired by the birds on the island. I never got around to displaying them properly, and they're currently packed in a box from our recent move. It's time they were resurrected!
Anyway, I digress...
While ErraZuriz's work is out of reach for most of us, I did discover some other bird chandeliers, made with real feathers and faux birds, that are available for sale online. But then there is always the option of using ErraZuriz's chandelier as inspiration for a DIY project!