Olaus Magnus, Carta Marina, 1539. Detail. James Ford Bell Library.
Speaking of map monsters,
here’s a piece in the that I only encountered this month. It’s a look at the sea serpents found in Public Domain Review from 2014 Olaus Magnus’s 1539 : “The northern seas of the marine and terrestrial map teem with fantastic sea monsters either drawn or approved by Olaus,” writes the author—none other than Joseph Nigg, who literally wrote Carta Marina the book on the . [ Carta Marina’s sea monsters WMS]
Sea Monsters and the Carta Marina.
A new scholarly book about the use of monsters on early modern maps has been brought to my attention. Surekha Davies’s ( Renaissance Ethnography and the Invention of the Human: New Worlds, Maps and Monsters Cambridge University Press, June) explores the use of both monsters and indigenous peoples on Renaissance maps. “Giants, cannibals and other monsters were a regular feature of Renaissance illustrated maps, inhabiting the Americas alongside other indigenous peoples. In a new approach to views of distant peoples, Surekha Davies analyzes this archive alongside prints, costume books and geographical writing.” Buy at Amazon. [ sourdoughchef]
Sea Monsters on Medieval and Renaissance Maps.
Retired graphic designer Don Moyer is producing
a sea monster shower curtain, inspired by the iconic beasties found on early modern European maps and based on a sea monster print he created last year. It’s a Kickstarter project, but since it’s already been funded, it’s definitely happening. So if your world map shower curtain is beginning to fray, here’s an alternative. [ ] Mental Floss
Ziphius et Orca, 2014. Bronze. 17¾″×11¼″×7″.
Porcus Marinus, 2014. Bronze, 16″×8½″×7″.
Pinniped, 2013. Cast resin, 11″×4¾″×4¾″.
Sea monsters are a familiar feature of early modern European maps. Toronto-based sculptor
Bailey Henderson has rendered them in real life, casting them in bronze and then painting them. It’s incredible work that really does evoke the original. More details at . [ Hi-Fructose magazine via]
For more sea monsters on maps, see
my review of Chet Van Duzer’s . You should also be aware that Sea Monsters on Medieval and Renaissance Maps #MapMonsterMonday is a thing on Twitter.