Christopher Marley's graceful arrangements of jewel-like arthropods make converts of those who have seen insects as creepy--these are stunning works of art, his delicate butterfly assemblages sublime. Marley's keen eye for design combines with his entomological education to produce mesmerizing, kaleidoscopic bug mandalas and striking up-close-and-personal single-insect portraits. The iridescent colors of beetle shells and moth wings are his pigments in a seemingly endless brilliant palette. The photographs of these arrangements present the bugs in their natural state: he does not digitally enhance any of the images. Each gorgeous creation is identified with its scientific and common names, and many are accompanied by concise descriptive text. In succinct essays, Marley writes about insect collecting and its benefits to the environment; he describes his creative process in choosing and arranging the creatures for optimal visual effect.
After a childhood spent running from every creature that skittered about on more than four legs, Marley has devoted much of his adult life to studying bugs--with increasing fascination. He makes frequent forays to remote locations far removed from his home in Oregon, seeking out the most beautiful and exotic species on Earth.
The more than 170 color photographs in Pheremone will appeal to anyone intrigued by dazzling design, beautiful bugs, entomology, or all three. Accompanying the broad sample of Marley's work is a series of essays by the artist: "Design of Insects," "Insects in Design," "History," "Color," "The Coleoptera Mosaics: An Exercise in Color," "Repetition," "Structure," "Texture," "Variations," "Botanicals," "Size," and "Environmental Effects."