The feather paintings of Ida Jarvis

Ida Helen Jarvis came up with the idea of making pictures out of feathers. She would travel around the world, visiting zoos and aviaries to add to her feather collection. Then she would arrange the feathers to form pictures of landscapes, gluing or stitching the feathers onto a cardboard mat.

She was so taken with this idea that she decided to patent it (Patent No. 1,395,575, 1921). Included in her patent was the idea of using down to represent foam in a stream of water.

Her feather paintings must have been quite colorful. But unfortunately the only image of one I can find is the black-and-white drawing included with her patent.

     Posted By: Alex - Sun Nov 22, 2020
     Category: Art | Inventions | Patents | 1920s

I came across a leftover piece of art from mom's collection that is made of human hair clippings. It is free form, in a frame of 12 by 14 inches and resembles a floral arrangement. The hair is tightly braided into threads and then gathered into coils approximately 1 to 1.5 inches across. I was told that it was made in the late 19th century into the early 20th and was a fad among young girls of the time. For its age it's in surprisingly good condition.
Posted by KDP on 11/22/20 at 11:14 AM
Such artwork today might get you into deep trouble because a lot of feathers are illegal to own.
Posted by Phideaux on 11/22/20 at 02:41 PM
@Phideaux Not all of them, though. Blue jays, for one, have fabulosa shimmiering colourful feathers, and they're not endangered at all. Hummingbirds, yeah, be careful. But there's a lot more birds around that aren't scarce, but are colourful.
Posted by Richard Bos on 11/28/20 at 09:06 AM
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