Deadly lake turns animals into statues....
October 1, 2013 10:28 AM   Subscribe

Deadly lake turns animals into statues-Photographer Nick Brandt, who has a long association with east Africa, took a detour from his usual work when he discovered perfectly preserved birds and bats on the shoreline.
posted by nevercalm (30 comments total) 37 users marked this as a favorite
 
My God, those photos are eerie. I've never seen anything like them. Poor bat!
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 10:32 AM on October 1, 2013


This is both grim and beautiful. It really feels like it would work as a perfect set-piece for hell or purgatory or something.
posted by quin at 10:32 AM on October 1, 2013


Holy crap. I don't know what I was expecting from "lake turns animals into statues", but it wasn't that.
posted by Rock Steady at 10:33 AM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


COME ON IN, THE WATER'S FINE
posted by theodolite at 10:34 AM on October 1, 2013 [24 favorites]


From the article...
The animals are all arranged in poses by the photographer.
...which takes away about 90% of the awesome.
posted by pipeski at 10:35 AM on October 1, 2013 [45 favorites]


That is the most Metal thing I have seen in a long time. I want to make a coffee table book called "Badass Earth" and this will be the cover.
posted by chambers at 10:37 AM on October 1, 2013 [4 favorites]


I WANT ONE.
posted by theperfectcrime at 10:39 AM on October 1, 2013


I bet they are left in place by the photographer as well, which makes the remaining 10% even more awesome when you realize that someday someone is going to stumble across them without context and wonder if they've slipped this mortal coil or maybe walked into a Dali film.
posted by quin at 10:39 AM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


The animals are all arranged in poses by the photographer.

Fine with me. These photos have a lot more impact than (not) perfectly preserved birds in the mud.
posted by kozad at 10:41 AM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


Reminds me of the Body Worlds exhibit. I would categorize these as other than just "photography" (although there's no doubt the artist has some skills), and, as such, it skews into sort of odd territory.
posted by HuronBob at 10:47 AM on October 1, 2013


Because whenever I stumble across a strange place where everything in the area has been killed and the corpses grotesquely made into statues, I know right away that the best course of action is to hang out in that area, maybe even take snaps.

It's about the only way there will ever be a statue of me.
posted by anonymisc at 10:49 AM on October 1, 2013 [5 favorites]


The animals are all arranged in poses by the photographer.

My god, I'd hope so . . . .
posted by IvoShandor at 10:49 AM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


...which takes away about 90% of the awesome.

I disagree. I've been photographing bird wings, and i can tell you they're not easy to work with. And that's the non-calcified, fresh out of Hades kind. I mean it would be truly amazing if they found like that, but now the guy is also a sculptor as well.
posted by nevercalm at 10:50 AM on October 1, 2013


The posed figures seem to parallel some of his other themes, like trophy heads looking out over the landscape.
posted by jetlagaddict at 10:51 AM on October 1, 2013 [5 favorites]


Deadly lake turns animals into statues...

posted by nevercalm (14 comments total)


Epon-ironic!

Thanks, nevercalm. I recall reading an article about an alkaline lake in OMNI thirty-odd years ago, and they have fascinated me ever since, as well giving me both heebies and jeebies.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 10:52 AM on October 1, 2013


trophy heads looking out over the landscape

Those are beyond creepy.
posted by goethean at 10:57 AM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


These would make great pets for bog people.
posted by ChuckRamone at 10:57 AM on October 1, 2013 [4 favorites]


Is "calcified" the correct term here? While the compounds sodium carbonate and sodium bicarbonate are alkali metals, just as calcium is (as I understand it), does calcification as a process cover instances where calcium is not directly involved?

Calcified in layman's terms seems an appropriate term to describe the result even if that isn't scientifically correct, but I didn't know if this was a catch-all name for this process of if it had different names depending on the makeup of the elements involved.
posted by chambers at 11:00 AM on October 1, 2013


it appears that the extreme reflective nature of the lake's surface confuses them, and like birds crashing into plate glass windows, they crash into the lake." [...] Animals that become immersed in the water die and are calcified.

These guys seem to be doing fine, and the wp article makes no reference to the lake being a statuary death hole. That some birds were calcified does not appear to mean that all birds are calcified.
posted by anazgnos at 11:01 AM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


These guys seem to be doing fine

Are you sure...'cuz, they look like statues to me, I've been watching and not one of them have moved....
posted by HuronBob at 11:04 AM on October 1, 2013 [8 favorites]


It's Tim Burton's bathtub!
posted by Thorzdad at 11:05 AM on October 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


There's a little bit more on Wikipedia about the actual habitation of the lake:
The high temperature (up to 41°C) and the high and very variable salt content of the lake does not support wildlife. However it is an important habitat for flamingos and is home to endemic algae, invertebrates and round the margins even fish that can survive in the slightly less salty water.
So it sounds like the flamingos build nests in the marshes and wetlands around it and then feed off the algae, but the lake itself is pretty toxic. Of course, it seems like this will all moot because pretty soon it will be destroyed by a factory, presumably leaving less interesting corpses of flamingos and fish in its wake.
posted by jetlagaddict at 11:07 AM on October 1, 2013




The idea does seem like it's up for debate, but that's charmingly epon-hysterical*!

*just me then?
posted by jetlagaddict at 11:49 AM on October 1, 2013


Arrragh! That's just..
evil.

The animals are all arranged in poses by the photographer.

...which takes away about 90% of the awesome.

Which still leaves 100% of the nightmare factor.
posted by BlueHorse at 12:13 PM on October 1, 2013


This reminds me somewhat of the deadly island in Life of Pi where the water turns to acid and all these skeletons bubble up. So in other words, stuff of nightmares.
posted by annekate at 12:27 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


trophy heads looking out over the landscape

Those are beyond creepy.


I agree. Far more transgressive than any art I've seen lately. Good stuff.
posted by heyho at 1:30 PM on October 1, 2013


It's Tim Burton's bathtub!

One of those statues MUST be Johnny Depp!
posted by Twain Device at 1:35 PM on October 1, 2013


The bat one's upside-down.
posted by Sys Rq at 3:06 PM on October 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


Pondering the engineering challenge of making the Reflecting Pool on the National Mall that alkaline and then inviting House Members down for a "meet your hooker" party. I'm thinking fracking fluid and tapping the steam vents might do the trick.
posted by skepticbill at 6:09 PM on October 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


« Older We don’t have the $7 million that we need to go...   |   Breaking Good Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments