Bug Balls by Claire Moynihan
Not everyone has the ability to enjoy the intricate beauty that is insects and various other little creepy crawlies, because most people just find them, well, creepy. Insects and gastropods, such as the snail, can be intimidating when in a pack or swarm, but on their own there is so much to be in awe of, whether it’s the explosion of colour on a butterfly’s wings, or wondering how a shell can stay on a body, which looks like it could be made from gummy worms.
Artist Claire Moynihan allows us spectators to better study these intriguing beasts, but in a new way; through embroidery. That’s right! Moynihan creates insects and gastropods as anatomically correct as she possibly can, using only some thread. She mounts them on small little felt balls, and displays them in traditional entomological shadow boxes, like the specimens of old. Her little ‘bug balls’ are specific to the wildlife of the British Isles, but most are recognizable as international pests. Funny enough, Moynihan started her practice with just recreations of moths, aka, ‘moth balls’.
Now, her collection has expanded; a real infestation if you will, but one I think anybody wouldn’t mind to have. As long as they don’t move!
- Anna Paluch