Halloween may be well behind us but we’ll always make time for a bit of delightfully spooky art, especially if it involves recycled materials. Philadelphia-based artist Caitlin McCormack brings to life fantastic skeletal beasts in her new show. Lazarus Taxa features crocheted skeletons made of discarded textile materials coated in enamel paint. These beautifully intricate artworks are typically pinned against black velvet, like specimens.
McCormack began crocheting skeletons as early as 2010 and uses a tiny hook to crochet each individual bone. While some skeletal creatures are created from her imagination, she’ll also often reference science books and make sketches to help flesh out an idea. To give the works their skeletal appearance, McCormack repeatedly dredges the crocheted form in a mixture of glue; the final hardened material is similar to brittle bone tissue.
Her new show, Lazarus Taxa, is titled after the term describing species that disappear and reappear from the fossil record. “In this body of work, McCormack explores how repressed memories come back as monstrous and warped versions of original events,” writes Paradigm Gallery + Studio, which will exhibit Lazarus Taxa from October 27 to December 9. “The series suggests the monstrosity that is produced when one attempts to forget and the festering of trauma that eventually returns.” Over 50 fiber sculptures will be represented, many entwined in a macabre tapestry of skeletal shapes.