Haute Macabre Staff Favorites For 2017: Maika’s Picks

Some personal thoughts on 2017… Oh 2017, you were a very challenging and full year. In addition to all the weight, worry, and woe about current events, my personal life was fraught with stress, growing pains, and heartache, none of which was actually new to the year itself. But the tide well and truly turned […]

Lost in The White Lodge: Twin Peaks The Return and the Artwork of Greg Ruth

Months later and I’m still puzzling over Twin Peaks: The Return, trying to put my thoughts about it together into some coherent, conveyable form instead of just staring into the distance, amazed and awed. I want to discuss it and I’ve done so with friends in fits and starts, but there’s just so much process and speculate […]

Ludi Naturae: Iris van Herpen Spring 2018 Couture

Dutch designer Iris van Herpen, endlessly innovative and inspiring, just debuted her Spring 2018 Couture collection entitled “Ludi Naturae,” and now we all want to clothe ourselves in finned, leafy, scaled, and flowing dresses, gowns, and jumpsuits that look like living biotech sculptures from a futuristic utopian fever dream. ‘Ludi’ is the plural form of the Latin term […]

Seven Sisters of Inherited Sun: Dilara Findikoglu SS18

Our collective jaw is on the floor over Turkish designer Dilara Findikoglu‘s spectacular Spring/Summer 2018 collection. Debuted during London Fashion Week, “Seven Sisters of Inherited Sun” is a glamorous, politically and mythologically inspired amalgam of sumptuous gothic finery that’s both sleek and baroque, occult imagery, and a wonderfully lurid punk edge. From the Designer: “You are beside me, winter trees, […]

Exploring the Daydream Spaces of Scott Radke

Cleveland-based artist Scott Radke creates beautifully haunting and utterly unique characters in the form of sculptures and marionettes made of wire, wood, epoxy resin, burlap, and acrylic paint. Some might be quick to describe his characters as otherworldly, but I find them perfectly at home here in this world; it’s just that they inhabit spaces most humans don’t […]

Colossal Memento Mori: Mass by Ron Mueck

We’re currently wishing we could magic ourselves over to the National Gallery of Victoria where, as part of the NGV Triennial group exhibition, they’re featuring a jaw-dropping installation by Australian hyperrealist sculptor Ron Mueck, his largest work to date. Entitled Mass, the installation is comprised of 100 individual meter-high fiberglass and resin human skull forms that are piled […]

From Solitary Deathling To Attending Death Salon Seattle

Looking back I wonder if I was an insomniac child. I don’t know enough or much at all, really, about human child development to know what’s normal. But I do know that, for as much of my childhood as I can remember, it always took me hours to fall asleep at night. On further thought, I […]

Contact The Upside Down With The Stranger Things Ouija Board

If you’re at least as excited as I am about the return of Stranger Things this very week (Friday, October 27th, for anyone who’s been out in the woods pursuing or running from Demogorgons) then you’ll no doubt be as delighted as I was to learn that Netflix partnered with Hasbro to create this wonderfully ominous Stranger Things-themed […]

Masked Fear: A New Book From The Burns Archive

If you’re interested in postmortem and/or old medical or crime scene photography (for starters), chances are good you’re already well acquainted with the wondrous Burns Archive. Founded in 1977 by Stanley B. Burns, MD, renowned author, curator, historian, collector, archivist, television/film consultant, and one of our personal heroes here at Haute Macabre, The Burn Archive is the largest private […]

Taiichiro Yoshida: Metal Blooms and Memento Mori

Japanese metal artist Taiichiro Yoshida creates chimerical sculptures of birds and other animals using flowers and feathers made of copper, bronze, or silver. Yoshida forges his creatures’ exquisite blooms and plumes by hand using traditional hot metalworking techniques that date back to sometime between the 2nd and 3rd century BC. We’re especially covetous of the pieces in which Yoshida incorporates the animal’s […]

Becoming Dangerous: A Book About Ritual and Resistance

We’re thrilled to share the news of a marvelous and timely new book ready to come into being via Kickstarter. BECOMING DANGEROUS is a collection twenty personal essays written by “witchy femmes, queer conjurers, and magical rebels on summoning the power to resist.” BECOMING DANGEROUS is a nonfiction book of deeply personal essays by marginalised people using […]

flow/er: Synthetic Floral Synethsis by Alexa Sirbu and Lukas Vojir

We’re entranced by this phantasmagorical video created by designers Alexa Sirbu and Lukas Vojir with music by Zelig Sound. Entitled “flow/er“, the experimental CG short barely lasts 30 seconds, but that’s one of the amazing things about dreams. While in the mind of the dreamer they might feel as though they go on forever, as far as our brains are […]

A Vast Palimpsest by Aaron Horkey

We’re thrilled to share the news that tomorrow the extraordinary creatives at The Vacuum are releasing an exquisite new limited edition print entitled “A Vast Palimpsest.” It’s a stunning collaboration between Vacvvm co-founder Aaron Horkey and Pressure Printing and their biggest release to date. “This is a deluxe giclee reproduction of a pencil & gouache drawing I […]

Leslie Ann O’Dell: Haunted Harbingers and Feral Phantoms

I gasped audibly the first time I set eyes on the work of contemporary artist Leslie Ann O’Dell. Entirely self-taught, O’Dell combines photography, digital art, and sometimes traditional elements to create portraits of nightmarishly beautiful creatures, each born of her own imagination yet to me feel like still more characters from unknown folktales I’m now yearning […]

Biblio-alchemy: The Liquid Library of Annalù Boeretto

Here at Haute Macabre there’s no such thing as too many books. We each live surrounded by overflowing shelves and stacks of books, old and new, and exist between their covers. But some books aren’t made for reading, they’re made for aesthetic appreciation and today we’re coveting these dynamic book sculptures created by Italian contemporary artist Annalù Boeretto. Primarily […]

Christina Mrozik: Metamorphosis, Quietus, and In-betweens

Although I can’t remember when I first discovered the work of Midwest-born, Portland, OR-based artist Christina Mrozik, I know I was already aware of her the first time I got to see some of it in person, right here in Portland at a group exhibition at the Antler Gallery in 2016. That was where I met a marvelously surreal piece, […]

How Not To Be Seen: Unlearning Invisibility

A few months ago Sam invited the staff writers to pen some personal pieces for Haute Macabre. I’ve since considered writing about a variety of subjects that interest me, but there’s something else, something much more personal that’s been on my mind for a very long time and this suddenly seemed like a singular opportunity to […]

Brooke Shaden: Visceral Visual Narratives

Every so often I encounter lists of wonderful words that describe emotions for which there are no English equivalents. (Saudade remains my most favorite.) Brooke Shaden accomplishes the same feat with photography, complex and raw emotions expressed in single square narrative images. The very first time I saw one of Brooke Shaden’s self-portraits she’d squeeze herself into a freezer for a piece […]

Playing With Death: The Morbid Curiosity Game

Death can be a tricky subject to discuss, even for those of us more morbidly-minded than most. It’s also endlessly, irresistibly fascinating and affects every single one of us. As our beloved Caitlin Doughty often reminds us, ignoring topics that frighten or make us uncomfortable only makes them scarier, whereas openly talking about them brings […]

Going Home to Twin Peaks

I’ve lived in the PNW for nearly 17 years, first in Seattle and now in Portland. But no matter how long one lives in a place, conversation eventually turns to where you lived might’ve lived before, which then glances over its shoulder and asks how you came to live where you do now. My answer […]

Own your own Handbook for the Recently Deceased

Good news, deathlings! We no longer need to wait until we meet our respective demises in order to obtain a copy of the Handbook for the Recently Deceased, that oft-coveted yet inscrutable guide to the afterlife first seen in Beetlejuice. Think Geek has released an exclusive, officially licensed replica of the dearly departed Maitlands’ very own handbook. The Handbook […]

The Poignant Beauty of Anne ten Donkelaar’s Broken Butterflies

For all their splendid colours, intricate patterns, and exquisite shapes, I find the most beautiful aspect of butterflies is how all those characteristics occur in such fragile, short-lived bodies. They remind me of a favorite line written by F. Scott Fitzgerald in The Beautiful and Damned: “There’s no beauty without poignancy and there’s no poignancy without the feeling […]

Savoring the celluloid hues of colorpalette.cinema on Instagram

Color is a uniquely powerful tool in the art of cinematic storytelling. We’re all naturally sensitive to color and its impact doesn’t require our conscious awareness in order to be felt emotionally, psychologically, and even physically. For some filmmakers, the role of color is so important it may as well be considered a character unto […]

Unsettling Ceramics by Sarah Duyer

All we want to do today is chase after this skittering teapot creature, which is the work of San Francisco-based ceramic artist and painter Sarah Duyer and undoubtedly contains some incredibly powerful elixir. Duyer also created these marvelous skeleton and severed finger ring bowls, both of which look like perfect places to store all the Blood Milk jewels we […]

So we met at the Cemetery Gates: An Interview with Nathan Graves

I freely admit that I first fell in love with the Pacific Northwest from afar while watching Twin Peaks back when I was attending high school in Chicago, but I’ve actually lived in the PNW since 2000. With its deep, lush forests, stormy beaches, and seemingly endless chains of grey, rainy days, the PNW is a wonderful […]

SÉANCE: Spiritualist Ritual and the Search for Ectoplasm by Shannon Taggart

The ever-inspiring Pam Grossman (recently interviewed here by S. Elizabeth) just tipped us off about the forthcoming release of a fascinating new book by Brooklyn-based photographer Shannon Taggart, who specializes in contemporary spirit photography. Entitled SÉANCE: Spiritualist Ritual and the Search for Ectoplasm, the book combines Taggart’s ethnographic study of Spiritualism with her processes for photographing spiritualist transformations, including such […]

Mysterious Maidens and Menacing Idylls: The Paintings of Stephen Mackey

Because the (admittedly fictional) Pevensie children discovered a magical portal to the land of Narnia in their caretaker’s wardrobe, I’m convinced that my house must somewhere conceal a gateway to the fairy-tale oil paintings of British artist Stephen Mackey, a land rich in haunting symbolism, as beautiful as it is disquieting. Inspired by oil paintings from the […]

Immortal Love from Decorus Macabre

In the grand scheme of things, loving the living is easy. There are countless ways to show your animate loved ones that you care. But what about those paramours who’ve shuffled off this mortal coil? What if you’re crushing on a ghost or perhaps there’s a phantom beyond the veil who’s pining for you. The Forever Collection from UK-based oddity shop Decorus […]

Remembering the Morbid Anatomy Museum

  There’s a Morbid Anatomy-shaped hole in our hearts. Last year, on December 18th, the Morbid Anatomy Museum first announced that they would be closing their doors. Shortly thereafter the museum was beautifully eulogized by Evan Michelson. Now we here at Haute Macabre would like to raise a glass in tribute to a singular institution that was dear to […]

The Skeleton Rocker: A Cozy Reminder of Our Mortality

Until this moment I had no idea that my house has been desperately missing a skeleton rocking chair. Modeled after a mid 19th century Russian chair, these beautiful, elaborately hand-carved rockers were made in the US in the 20th century, most likely during the 1930s. With an estimated auction value of $2,500 to $3,5oo, this isn’t the most […]