Saint Petersburg-based artist Mateo Pizarro (previously featured here) has created a series of drawings, entitled ‘Bestiary of Improbable Animals’, depicting bizarre creatures made based on old descriptions of American animals.
To create the Bestiary project, a researcher has been extracting animal descriptions from specific historical sources, removed the names of the animals and gave Mateo only the description for the draw.
‘I then draw them based solely on the descriptions, without any previous knowledge about the beasts. It might be worth noting that those sources make no distinction between normal and mythological beings’.
With his project, Pizarro attempts to recreate the experience of living in a world before the advent of photography, video or Google Earth, when people had to learn about the world only through written descriptions.
On the other hand, the project is based on the idea that a text was interpreted by each individual in his own way.
‘One of the things we find to be interesting is how wildly different the imagined animal can be to the real one. If you were so inclined, you might spend a little time thinking how many possible versions of the elephant existed in the imagination of Europeans between the Ist and the XIVth centuries.’
Check Mateo’s entire project on Behance.