Diane Fox: UnNatural History


For the past several years, Diane Fox has trained her eye on the taxidermied animal. This solo exhibit includes two directions the work has taken, UnNatural History and UnNatural History Portraits.

UnNatural HIstory is a collection of photographs shot in natural history museums in the US and abroad. Using reflection and the inclusion of items within the diorama’s case meant to remain unseen, Fox seeks to point to its unreality and the disconnection within the human/animal relationship.

UnNatural History Portraits display the taxidermied animal portrait in larger than-life scale and gazing directly at the viewer. They seek to raise the status of the animal, much in the same way that historical portrait paintings of the aristocracy are displayed within the museum. These photographs ask the viewer to confront the animal’s history as a living being and their subsequent treatment in death.

For the past 15 years, Fox has taught photography and graphic design in the College of Architecture and Design at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. A selection of solo and two-person exhibitions include the Los Angeles Center for Digital Photography, Los Angeles, CA; the Huntsville Museum of Art, Huntsville, AL, the Erie Art Museum, Erie, PA; Tower Fine Arts Gallery, SUNY Brockport, Brockport, NY; Greyfriars Art Space in Norfolk, England; Dom Muz Gallery, Torun, Poland; and Santa Reparata Gallery, Florence, Italy. Selected pieces have been exhibited in numerous juried shows. Images from UnNatural History are cited in Giovanni Aloi’s book Art and Animals published by I.B.Tauris &Co.Ltd (2012) and Taxidermy by Alexis Turner published by Thymes and Hudson (2013).

Image title: Flock, Bell Museum of Natural History, Minneapolis, Minnesota 2016