Category Archives: Snakes

Ashley Bickerton – Damien Hirst does it again


Orange Shark (2008)

Ashley Bickerton’s Ornamental Hysteria is another brilliant exhibition in Damien Hurst’s gallery in Newport Street. Like the previous exhibition of his own Jeff Koons artefacts, the exhibition extends over two floors.

Born in Barbados in 1959, he has moved around the world ending up in New York in 1982.

Flower Pot (2009)

It’s hard to choose which of his work I liked best. This sculpture of colourful flowers growing out of skulls is certainly high on my list. The texture and colour of the stone container are gorgeous. The painting behind is Red Scooter (2009) a joyous vision of a family and their dog riding a red scooter on the beach.

Canoe, shark, woman (2016)

Love this sculpture of a woman balancing on a pile of coconuts and holding another hammer-head shark .

The serene painting on the wall behind is K.T._K.T (2015).

I must go again!!


On the railings outside Buckingham Palace
On the railings outside Buckingham Palace

The exhibition of Maria Merian’s Butterflies at the Queen’s Gallery opened after that of the Scottish Artists so we made another trip there. Fortunately the ticket lasts a year so we’ll be able to use it for Portrait of the Artist due to open November 4th.

A branch of Seville Orange with a Rothschildia moth
A branch of Seville Orange with a Rothschildia moth

Maria Sibylla Merian, German artist and entomologist left for Suriname in 1699. There she made detailed drawings and paintings of the flora and fauna. She studied and illustrated the metamorphosis of a variety of caterpillars into butterflies or moths. She said that the Rothschildia moth had wings ‘like a piece of Moscow glass’ and sent some of the strong silk  produced by  their caterpillars to Amsterdam to encourage their breeding for silk.

False Coral Snake, Banded Cat-Eyed Snake and Frogs
False Coral Snake, Banded Cat-Eyed Snake and Frogs

This watercolour and bodycolour on vellum was probably arranged from specimens including mildly venomous snakes this adventurous woman brought back from Suriname. It was probably painted  by Merian’s daughters.