Monday, November 30, 2009


This is my most recent box called THE YOUNG ENTOMOLOGIST. I have always loved bugs, insects and especially beetles. I think they are so architecturally perfect for what they do.


On the exterior of the box is a luna moth photo-etched in nickel. The moth stands off the background, which is photo-etched red brass, by just enough that the wing becomes the handle for opening the door. The leaf finial on the top is etched copper with one section scolloped where some insect had a meal.


There are some surprises on the inside of the box. The young girl, etched in nickel, is from a turn of the century vintage photograph. I chose her because she looks a little tomboy-ish and not afraid of bugs. She reminds me of myself....quick to dissect a wasps nest....nimble at capturing fireflies (or lightning bugs as we called them in the south)....and fascinated by dung beetles. Behind the young girl and etched in red brass are the orders of the insects. I was a biologist long before I became an artist and scientific names are familiar and important to me. On the shelves to the right are a microscope....some specimen bottles with collected insects....and a wasps nest behind a magnifying glass. The body of the box is cherry and is intended to be wall hung by the connected Japanese yen coins. So far, this is one of my more complex boxes and I'm excited to try some more.

This limited edition box measures 12" wide x 12.25" tall x 1.75" deep when closed. When open the width is 26 inches.

Once while I was living in Arkansas I witnessed an owl sitting on a post near an outside porch light. The owl would fly away and in minutes come back with a luna moth. It would hold the moth in it's talon and strip the wings off with it's beak letting them flutter to the ground before eating the body of the moth...I was reminded of peel 'em and eat 'em shrimp. I will never forget those wings fluttering down like little ghosts. The owl repeated this ritual over and over again. The next morning there was a pile of large greenish moth beautiful and a little heartbreaking at the same time. How could I not love insects....

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