When I was a eight, I can remember lying on the living room floor, paging through the medical books that had belonged to my grandfather, looking at the illustrations. There were photos, too, and those were mostly disgusting: Lumps, growths, fissures, amputations. I was gleefully appalled. As an adult, I don’t enjoy the awful photos, mostly because I can’t get past the suffering they imply, but I still adore anatomical illustrations, which is one of many reasons I made ridiculous squealing noises when my friend Cindy gave me this set of 15 old scientific diagrams:
To give you an idea of size, these are about 13 inches tall (or wide, depending on their orientation). Objectively, that is squeal-worthy.
The more I thought about hanging these on the wall, the more I realized that I had all kinds of related objects already on display in the house: A medical model of a brain that my friend Russell gave me, some teeth, a taxidermied piranha, a possum skull that my friend Tanya found and cleaned and bleached and sent to me. To make room for this whole new very exciting display, I took down a huge movie poster that we acquired about 12 years ago, and sure, okay, it wasn’t really even a movie poster, but a print of a movie poster, and yes, fine, if you really want to get technical, we never even saw the movie. SHEESH YOU ARE TECHNICAL.
Right, so from the group of 15, I settled on these five favorites:
Did I mention that they’re three-dimensional?
3D hell yeah.
Once I had secured Velcro dots to the corners of all five cards, I tried them on the wall in this formation:
I had an idea for filling that gap, but alas, it worked about as well as flirting with that gay string musician back in college in a low-cut black sweater that he politely pretended had a higher neckline.
After a little rearranging, I started adding stuff, and that’s when I realized I might want a little wooden shelf. Oh darn. Not the antique mall. Not again.
Two hours and $5 dollars later, voila! A little wooden shelf.
Oh, and this needs mentioning: This is the amazingly awesome dino-turkey my son gave me for Christmas. An artist made it. My son bought it. I love it. And it obviously needs to join this grouping.
Although I liked this, something was still bothering me. The cards seemed to want more individual definition – frames, but without framing, if you will.
Anatomical fish, meet black paint. Black paint, my friend, the naked fish.
Rock. On. Now, that dinoturkey still wants a little something, a little dignity and presence, but I’m saving that for next week. For now, here’s my anatomi-dermied wall that I can’t stop staring at.
Because I love it.