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Beautiful Monsters

Anya Charikov-Mickleburgh, Laura Dekker, Donal Moloney, Ed Saye, Evgenyi Strelkov, Dina Varpahovsky

The fantastical creatures illustrated in the 16th-century encyclopaedia Historiae Animalium have influenced countless writers and scholars through the centuries and form the starting point for The Portico Library’s 2018 exhibition, Beautiful Monsters. The book’s author, Conrad Gessner, included actual and mythological animals side-by-side, including many labelled ‘monsters’, with little distinction between the real and the imaginary. Six international exhibitors have responded to this and other volumes in the library’s collection with new works incorporating drawing, painting, textiles, robotics and artists’ books, considering where the idea of the monstrous sits within themes of history, mythology and 21st-century life.

Earlier Event: May 8
Performance: So Many Voices
Later Event: June 7
Peterloo from The Portico