Contortionist Leilani Franco Scores 3 Guinness World Records

Amazing contortionist Leilani Franco has received three world records in the 2014 Guinness Book of World Records for her amazing abilities. She now holds the records for the most full body revolutions maintaining a chest stand in one minute (25), the fastest human backbend walk (20 meters in 10.05 sec), and she traveled the fastest 20 meters in a contortion roll (17.47 sec).

The Girl and Death: The Art of August Brömse

August Brömse (1873-1925) was a Czech artist heavily influenced by contemporary German art and culture. His Girl and Death series originated in 1901-1902. It is believed to echo his relationship with concert singer Eisa Schünemann.

The series consists of seven paintings:

August Bromse - By the Window from the Girl and Death series
By the Window

August Bromse - In the Park from the Girl and Death series
In the Park

August Bromse - Life Escaping from the Girl and Death series
Life Escaping

August Bromse - An Old Song from the Girl and Death series
An Old Song

August Bromse - Dance from the Girl and Death series
Dance

August Bromse - I'm Coming from the Girl and Death series
I’m Coming

August Bromse - The Lost Paradise from the Girl and Death series
The Lost Paradise

“The Girl and Death” is a modern variant of the Dance of Death. Death (a skeleton) plays a fantastic song on the violin; the girl listens in fascination and dances a wild dance — death accompanies her life’s pilgrimage. Life becomes endless suffering for the girl, cursed by the deity; her love is fatefully led from the start by tragic steps. As a symbol of the first fruits of sin the girl, in some sort of hypnotic trance, flies through space on a great snake which — in some prints of the series — holds an apple in its mouth. The concept of the landscape evokes a sense of unreality and timelessness. One of the last prints brings the whole story up to date. The girl lies prostrate on a window-sill; the anonymous roof tops of the modern city appear in the background.” — Otto M. Urban, In Morbid Colors: Art and the Idea of Decadence in the Bohemian Lands

Stuffed Animals in Costumes

This is a trailer for the 1965 film about eccentric Victorian taxidermist Walter Potter and his hand-made anthropomorphic taxidermy museum.

Check out the new book and documentary about Potter’s work here: Walter Potter’s Curious World of Taxidermy

Walter Potter’s Curious World of Taxidermy

The Death and Burial of Cock Robin by Walter Potter
The Death and Burial of Cock Robin by Walter Potter

When Victorian-era English taxidermist Walter Potter’s tiny museum of his own personal anthropomorphic creations was auctioned off in 2003 (read about it in Still Life by Melissa Milgrom) his whimsical collection was dispersed across the globe despite a $1 million bid from artist Damien Hirst to keep the collection together.

Many key pieces of Potter’s work were exhibited by collector Sir Peter Blake in 2010 at London’s Museum of Everything, drawing 30,000 visitors in six weeks.

Walter Potter’s Curious World of Taxidermy showcases photos of some of Potter’s best-loved work all in one place, and might be the only way they will ever be seen together again.

The book will also be accompanied by a documentary called “Where Kittens Wed and Birds Lament” directed by Ronni Thomas:

There was also a 1965 film about Potter’s work called Crazy Taxidermy Museum – Stuffed Animals in Costumes.

Traveling Museum Box by Ron Pippin

Traveling Museum Box by Ron Pippin

Ron Pippin has been making amazing and bizarre things for a very long time that fall somewhere between natural history museum diorama and steampunk art.

This Traveling Museum Box is one of his creations from 1994.

Check out his website for more, including recent work and current projects: ronpippin.com