Bird's Do It, Bee's Do It...
If ever I find myself at a loss for words (admittedly, not regularly) I often pepper awkward silences with an array of animal facts memorized over the years – everyone loves an animal fact, no??
Giraffe can’t cough.
Hippopotamus milk is bright pink.
An ostrich's eye is bigger than its brain.
Yes – Conversational Gold people!!
So imagine my joy when I saw The Natural History Museum (previously seen in my mind as the home of dinosaurs and swarming herds of children armed with colds and clipboards) were showing an exhibition entitled ‘Sexual Nature’ – a whole area dedicated to the most awesome, and thoroughly racy, animal facts around.
With low lighting, seedy lounge room music and the frequent cries of Isabella Rossellini begging various species of wildlife to seduce her (her fabulous, award winning ‘Green Porn’ shorts are shown throughout) you undertake a giggly, multi-sensory exploration of the weird and wonderful world of the sexual and reproductive behaviour of hundreds of animals and insects.
I am thrilled that any future awkward dinner party moments look set to be resolved with a more risqué myriad of animal knowledge (“Do you know snakes have two penises and an octopus's testicles are located in its head? Please pass the gravy...”) but I would however, strongly recommend veering away from the ‘sniff me’ boxes containing the mating scents of wild stags and jaguars.. More than likely similar to Ron Burgandy’s fragrance of choice, the infamous, ‘Sex Panther’ ("60% of the time it works every time!”) a handy packet of Tic Tacs later, I was still wincing.
Exhibiting until the last Friday of October 2011.