If you attended our Bedford + Bowery Bazaar a few years ago, then you’re familiar with Divya Anantharaman, the “dead animal addict” who, among other things, created six-inch heels using a dead sparrow. These days she’s the “taxidermist in residence” at the Morbid Anatomy Museum and the co-author of a new book, Stuffed Animals: A Modern Guide to Taxidermy. When it comes out in October, she won’t be having any ol’ book party where she signs your grandma’s pelt. Rather, she’s teaming up with the oddballs at Atlas Obscura for a “carnival of taxidermy.”
The carnival bills itself as “a festival of music, libations and presentations,” including stop-motion films, oddities vendors, a short history of taxidermy with renowned stuffer John Janelli, and demos by Divya and her co-author, fellow Brooklyn-based taxidermy artist and teacher Katie Innamorato (sorry, you just missed Katie’s NYC chipmunk class). There will also be ticketed taxidermy workshops, in case you’re inspired by the satyr tragopan that Divya is raffling off. (And if all of this just creeps you out, the cocktails should help.) The whole thing is happening at ACME Studios, the Williamsburg photo studio and props facility that is itself a taxidermy-festooned house of wonder.
Tickets for the Oct. 23 event are $30 to $65, depending on whether you want a signed copy of the book. It might just be worth splurging on the how-to guide. Divya once taught us how to stuff a mouse and while we can’t say it moved us to start scouring the L-train tracks for specimens (actually, she and Katie are all about ethical sourcing), it was much more enjoyable than our usual encounters with rodents.