“The series of photographs represent an unusual, early diversion away from the artist’s usual muse, the female nude.
The series was born of an encounter with Deyrolle, a famous French taxidermist, who gave Rheims access to his tame bestiary of stuffed animals. In all, Rheims shot more than 57 portraits of the dead animals. Each appears in black and white, lifeless but somehow reborn in Rheims’ vivid prints – the quality of Deyrolle’s work and the naturalistic edge to Rheims’ photography presents the animals as living, breathing beings.
Every detail of the animals, from attentive eyes to responsive ears, is distilled. Some of the creatures are wild, like the hare or the baboon, its mouth agape, preserved forever mid cry. Others are domesticated, like the attentive dog, still awaiting its owner’s approval, or the horse, staring blankly at the viewer. In common, the images are fragile and endearing, despite the mortality of the subjects.” (http://www.ginzafashion.com/collections/view/10_animal)
Animal is a publication by the French photographer Bettina Rheims in which she photographs stuffed animals .