When an artist like that is set loose in the hidden-away collections of the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, where thousands of specimens are kept in drawers, you just know that magic is going to happen. And it did: Bonaths three-floor exhibit of 62 works based mostly on what he found in those collections is on display through next February.
He looked through things that even the curators couldnt make head or tail of. It was such an adrenaline rush, says Bonath. I was able to take things out of there to the studio, as they had no real rules about it. Some objects Id request would baffle them. They were beautiful things to photograph, but they dont see them as having value. For instance, I used a tub of snake sheds. I did a paper-wasp nest. People bring things in, and theyre of no value to the museum scientists.
Tonight at 7 p.m., Bonath, with DMNS zoology collections manager Jeff Stephenson providing a scientific counterpoint, will discuss his work and why he chose the items he did in a lecture titled A Strange Beauty: The Stories Behind the Art; for tickets, $12 to $15, visit www.dmns.org or call 303-322-7009.
Tue., Oct. 25, 7 p.m., 2011