Tag Archives: Immortalized

Gutsy Tacoma artist takes on t.v. taxidermy challenge

24 Dec
Barnyard animals bring out the best in taxidermy enthusiast, Cat Grey. Photo: Vicky Winters

Barnyard animals bring out the best in taxidermy enthusiast, Cat Grey. Photo: Vicky Winters

It’s official – Tacoma artist Acataphasia Grey will star on Immortalized, a new reality show about the world of competitive taxidermy debuting February 14, 2013, on AMC. “Cat” was shooting in Los Angeles last month, one of eight challengers on the program, whose formula she compares to the insanely popular Iron Chef. Although there is no cash award for the winner, contestants fight tooth and nail “for bragging rights at the top of their field,” she says.

Grey is no stranger to show business. Now a full-time artist, she was once the art director of a Bainbridge Island production company where she managed projects such as shooting video for M-TV. In 2010, she got a call from Go Go Luckey Entertainment, a Los Angeles-based production company specializing in reality and scripted television, asking her to brainstorm ideas for a reality show about “rogue taxidermy”. Not only did she seed concepts, eventually she was invited (in a final format unfamiliar to her) to be a contestant on the show along with other experienced taxidermy artistes.

Party animals: an installation by Cat Grey. Photo courtesy of the artist

Party animals: vignettes like this one on the streets of Paris have inspired Cat Grey. Photo courtesy of the artist

Grey’s ironic flair with deceased and/or stuffed animals has been on display in Tacoma in elaborate installations based on Victorian tea parties, created with support from the Spaceworks program. She lives here with her cat, Mr. James Peterson.

Her earliest contact with “taxidermy and preservation” was as a child growing up in Australia. When she was 15, a family rabbit died, and she began experimenting “with alum and things like that.” But her trials were repeatedly interrupted by a grandmother’s dog who had a penchant for eating her experiments.

Grey says she didn’t mind her trials being destroyed by the dog because her aesthetic goals always outpaced her scientific ones: “The process didn’t interest me at all, it was the results I wanted.” Continue reading

Which Spaceworks artist will compete in a reality show?

2 Dec

Stuffed kitten. Kidding! Lovingly cared-for cat by Laurie Cinotto. Photo courtesy of the artist

Word’s out that a Spaceworks artist is going to compete on a new reality show, Immortalized on AMC. Immortalized is no Darwinian teledrama with artists slugging it out for prizes – that would be Work of Art: The Next Great Artist, a cable series in which artists fiercely compete for a solo exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum and $100,000 in cash.

Immortalized explores the strange and provocative world of competitive taxidermy. That’s right, a behind-the-scenes look at the passionate detail and artistic expression that goes into transforming dead animals into compelling art. Competitors are asked to create a piece to be judged on three criteria: originality, craftsmanship and interpretation of the designated theme. Whether the artists are known for their classic or rogue creations, each week they will work to perfect this centuries-old art form in an unprecedented battle.

“No Guts, All Glory,”  so the tagline goes.

Immortalized premieres Thursday, February 14 at 10/9c, on AMC. We smell something interesting in the works…

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