The Zen Mushnkey is a baby Rhesus Macaque that was born in a zoo and died very shortly there after. It’s skull was cut during a necropsy by a veterinarian. I obtained this animal from another skeleton builder and the bones set in bags for weeks on my desk. I would randomly pick the skull up, open it, and just look at this interesting little creature.
After awhile it started to have this oddly peaceful look to me. I think it’s no secret that I’m a fan of Psilocybin mushrooms, and one day I realized I needed to represent the concept of opening your mind with mushrooms. I did not plan on the meditation pose. I just started building, which is my normal method even with anatomical skeletons. I sort of figure out what pose the animal “wants” to be in as I go along. It just happens organically. This piece was no different.
The stem of the mushroom is made with the vertebrae from a large Reticulated Python, and the gills are made from the ribs of a Ball Python.
I kept this piece for well over a year, but then one day I decided to let it go to the next person and I sold it. I regret that decision to this day. It met it’s demise in the hands of a shipping warehouse and was completely destroyed beyond repair. I had it shipped back to me and I saved the skull/mushroom part and rebuilt just that area in a small glass dome. It now resides on a collectors shelf.