Nomen Nudum: Naked Name

Nomen Nudum/Naked Name: A name which looks like a scientific name but has not been published with a description/illustration and thus is a “bare” or “naked” name, one which cannot be accepted as it currently stands.

Two creatures arrived salted and in a cask of spirits at the Mouth of the Tyne in 1799. A woman was asked to carry this unexplained barrel from the quayside to the Literary and Philosophical Society. As she mounted the cask on her head for ease of transport, the bottom gave way washing her in foul smelling spirited brine. A creature fell at her feet in all of its odd and frightening glory; part bird, part quadruped and fully unexpected. Dawn Felicia Knox endeavoured to create artworks which spark such wonder.

The books/boxes are constructed with book covers, given to waste by wear and red rot, recycled from the shelves of the Lit and Phil Library. The images are made from the original wombat and platypus which arrived on that fateful day and now form a part of the Natural History Society Northumbria’s collection in the Great North Museum: Hancock. This work was featured in Returning to the Philosophers’ Table.

This work was funded by the Literary and Philosophical Society in partnership with the North East Photography Network.