From July 26 to 30, Jason Housel is the Draper Natural History Museum’s artist-in-residence. Jason will be interacting with guests and creating displays that showcase the diversity of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.
For thousands of years humans have been creating art. From cave paintings to contemporary sculptures, art has taken on many shapes and forms over our existence. A relatively newer form in the grand timeline of artistic crafts involves displaying animals in (typically) natural positions otherwise known as taxidermy. This unique craft affords viewers an up-close look at some of the world’s most fascinating species. At the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, we are lucky to have amazing taxidermy mounts* that bring guests as close as they should ever get to Yellowstone’s beautiful wildlife. At the end of July, the Center is excited to welcome a professional taxidermist to help bring more displays to life.
Born and raised in Cody, Wyoming, Jason has been interested in taxidermy from a young age, starting from when his great uncle, Lawrence Keffer, shared tales of his own taxidermy adventures. From that point on there was no turning back. Jason graduated from high school early so he could attend taxidermy school in Spencer, Iowa. He worked a couple of years in the taxidermy business before joining the Army in 2000. He served as a Military Police Officer for more than five years and is a combat war veteran. After the Army, he returned to his craft and has been doing full-time taxidermy ever since. His abilities cover the full spectrum of taxidermy, from small fish to large mammals.
Jason At the Museum
Jason’s work is incredible, and we are excited to have him in the Center. Make sure to come and visit at the end of this month to meet Jason and to talk about his work. We know he will fulfil his mission statement:
“I will always strive to do my best to make sure your mount is the best quality and something you will enjoy for many years to come and pass on your stories and adventurers.”
*Mounts at the Museum: We gratefully acknowledge the United States Fish and Wildlife Service and the Wyoming Game and Fish Department for providing animal specimens confiscated after being killed illegally or acquired after natural or accidental death. Many other agencies and organizations especially Ironside Bird Rescue, the United States Forest Service, the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, and the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, assisted us in locating and acquiring these specimens.