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These Cool Sculptures Combine Animal Bones With Antiques

These aren't your grandmother's tchotchkes: Since 1992, artist Jessica Joslin has been creating detailed sculptures by hand out of pieces of found antiques and the bones of various animals, including monkeys, birds, cats, and bats. 

Inspired by Victorian-era ornamentation and mid-16th century cabinets of curiosities known as "Wunderkammer," Joslin's animal sculptures—or "pets," as she calls them—manage to be creepy and playful at the same time. A self-taught anatomy enthusiast, Joslin creates the bodies out of bone, brass, antique parts, and found metal, crafting creatures big and small that she says "reflect both the real and the imagined animal, the living and the dead."

In an interview with Hi Fructose, Joslin described her work as a "finely-calibrated trinity of considerations: aesthetic, engineering, and anatomical." She added that while she is "referencing specific structures, and usually from the species that I am depicting," none of her pieces are meant to replicate any living animal's anatomy. "I figure that since it’s my world, I get to make the rules ... also, more generally speaking, in my work, I’m always representing interior and exterior anatomy simultaneously. One line of a form might delineate the belly and another, the ribcage. Of course, you wouldn’t typically see both at the same time, so it creates a sort of double vision between the skeletal anatomy and the structure of the living animal."

Check out some of Jessica Joslin's work below, and head to her website for more images from her collection.

All images via Jessica Joslin
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Animals
Why Male Hyenas Have It Worse Than Females
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A life of hunting zebras and raising young on the savanna isn’t half bad for a female hyena. Sadly, the same can’t be said for their male counterparts. As MinuteEarth explains, things take a downturn for the males of the species once they hit adolescence. No female in their pack will mate with them, a behavior scientists believe evolved to avoid inbreeding, so they head off in search of a different group to join. After dealing with vicious hazing from their new clan, they file in at the bottom of the rank and wait for other males above them to die so that they can slowly gain status.

Even after rising through the hierarchy, the most a male hyena can aspire to is being second place to the lowest-ranking female. Thanks to their bulky build and aggressive behavior, female hyenas enjoy a dominant position that’s rare in the animal kingdom.

After watching the video below, head over here for more facts about hyenas.

[h/t MinuteEarth]

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Art
A Beached Whale Sculpture Popped Up on the Banks of Paris's Seine River
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In Paris, dozens of fish varieties live in the Seine River. Now, the Associated Press reports that the famous waterway is home to a beached whale.

Rest assured, eco-warriors: The sperm whale is actually a lifelike sculpture, installed on an embankment next to Notre Dame Cathedral by Belgian artists’ collective Captain Boomer. It’s meant to raise environmental awareness, and evoke "the child in everyone who still is puzzled about what is real and what is not,” collective member Bart Van Peel told the Associated Press.

The 65-foot sculpture has reportedly startled and confused many Parisians, thanks in part to a team of fake scientists deployed to “survey” the whale. One collective member even posted a video on social media, warning Parisians that there “may be others in the water” if they opt to take a dip in the river, The Local reported.

The whale sculpture is only temporary—but as for Captain Boomer, this isn’t their first whale-related stunt. Last summer, the collective installed a similar riverside artwork in Rennes, France, and they also once strapped a large-scale whale sculpture to the back of a truck and drove it around France.

[h/t Associated Press]

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