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Mechanical Animals: Art by Jessica Joslin

A sculpture of a turtle made from animal bones and gold detailsUntitled


Jessica Joslin combines an arts background with training in the professional trades to create her fascinating mechanical animals. Sculpted from real and replica animal bones, as well as metals, wood and altered found materials, Jessica’s sculptures are equal parts eerie and ornate.


I find Jessica’s constructions really incredible. Each sculpture is fabricated expertly, with almost no evidence of the artist’s hand. The finished products seem to exist as their own entities. Over the course of her career, Jessica has produced over 200 of these delicate works.


A sculpture of a tiny deer's head with a skull and antlersUntitled


The materials the artist uses vary depending on the precise nature of each work. For common animal figures, she obtains real bones through a licensed seller that offers ethically sourced specimens. For rarer animals, she sculpts replica bones, or alters the bones of easier-to-obtain animals to create a more exotic look. The contrast between the organic look of the bones and the distinctly cobbled-together mechanical charm of the rest of the object lends an antique, Victorian appearance to the sculptures.


A sculpture of a bat made from bones and found objectsUntitled

About the author

Dallas Jeffs Art Writer

Dallas Jeffs is the Editor of Artist Run Website's blog. They hold a degree in Critical and Cultural Practices from Emily Carr University of Art and Design, as well as a certificate in Technical Writing from BCIT. Dallas has a passion for speaking and writing about art, and sharing that interest with others. In their studio practice they are an illustrator and budding tattoo artist, but they consider themselves a writer foremost. If you like art, books and culture with a science fiction twist, check out Dallas' personal blog, HappySpaceNoises or their art on Instagram.

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