Peter Clarke (1929 - )
The Butterfly Collector

mixed media
50 x 35cm

The enthusiastic collector, he is all passion, pursuing butterflies left,
right & centre, where ever they are, where ever they may be. He has
certain people informing him where certain rarities or unusual ones
that will be of interest to him can be located. With his net he is seen
going about in the fields, in the woods, like a hunter pursuing prey.

The butterflies he collects, dozens & dozens & dozens of them, are
catalogued & neatly framed & boxed & hung on walls or stacked where
ever there is space in different parts of his home. Very few people know
about these. The public is not supposed to know about it, only carefully
selected people. So no-one comes to see this collection of really quite
spectacular specimens except those who are invited. It is like a hoard
of rather colourful treasure so secret that the world passes by oblivious
to the fact that it exists. Because the sight of such beauty is not
shared it is in fact a waste.

There is something coldly calculating & just a bit disturbing about it
all, about this desire always to acquire, to possess, to hoard, to store
away out of sight of the public such a superb collection. There is
something sad about it. The secrecy hints at the tragic.

2005 Michael Stevenson. All rights reserved.