Axel Straschnoy

The Dioramas of the Permian Museum

The Dioramas of the Permian Museum is a tridimensional photo series portraying the zoological collection’s animals in their new habitat: the museum storage.

Since the 1960s, the Perm Regional Museum used to have several dioramas in its displays. After moving venue in 2007, these were dismantled and their parts put into storage. The taxidermied animals that were part of them currently inhabit a former office, crowded in unlikely combinations that span biotopes and predator-prey relationships.

Many of these animals, collected when they were typical for the region, have become endangered. Some have gone extinct. The biotopes that the dioramas’ painted backgrounds depicted have in many cases ceased to exist. For many of the animals in the Museum’s Zoological collection, the storage itself has become their natural habitat, the only place they can still be found.

Axel Straschnoy’s work has been supported by a State Grant for Artists from the Arts Promotion Centre Finland. His residency at the museum was supported by the Vladimir Potanin Foundation. The projects were co-produced by the Perm Regional Museum and Kolme Perunaa.