Blog Archives

Ole Worm and the History of Curio Cabinets

I am an avid collector of small things both natural and cultural: rocks, seedpods, carvings, fetishes, art, more rocks, curiosities, skins, and – wait – did I already mention rocks?

Many of my naturalist comrades share this tendency to hoard similar items, perhaps as a way to remember the places we’ve been or to bring the outdoors inside. Our fascination with these items is not a new trend; in fact, collecting “curios” (defined as a rare or unusual object, considered attractive or interesting) dates back to the ending of the Middle Ages and the opening of the Renaissance.

1592 collection of engravings by the Flemish artist Joris Hoefnagel. University of Massachusetts Amherst. Photo credit: www-sicd.u-strasbg.fr

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{Book Review} Interpretation by Design

Long, long ago, when I was but a sparkly-eyed college student, I wanted a career in graphic design. No one told me to make sure the college you select HAS the career you want – I just assumed all colleges carried the same majors. (Yes, it’s quite a miracle I achieved a degree at all, isn’t it?) Well, none of that mattered anyway, because I took an Anthropology class elective in my first semester and immediately changed my major (and then later took an Ecology elective and realized I had, yet again, chosen incorrectly, but it was too late by then).

I’m not sure how I keep ending up with embarrassing personal stories for you guys when I try to make a point, but what I’m getting at is a very cool book and a very cool blog that you might enjoy if you have an inclination towards graphic design but don’t want to get a degree.

Put this book in your library.

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