North London's Cultural Guide

Lumo Pink by artist Rachel Whittingham

Local Talent Q&A: Rachel Whittingham, customiser of animal skulls and antlers, 48

Earlier in the summer we put out a call to local artists to send in their work. We display the entrants weekly

Self-portrait of Rachel Whittingham
Rachel Whittingham. Photo: self-portrait

What’s your practice? My collection called HornyThings was born in 2010. It evolved from a passion for nature and an interest in music, fashion and the slightly macabre. I started with the skulls of roe deer and majestic stags – the juxtaposition of the natural bone with Swarovski crystals, gold and silver leaf are an interesting combination.

How long have you lived in the area? My family and I moved to Kentish Town in 2000, then across to Camden in 2018. I’m from Yorkshire originally – this part of town feels much friendlier than other parts, with a sense of community.

What are you most proud of? Lumo Pink, a stunning Scottish stag with luminous pink antlers and Swarovski crystals. I gave it to a charity auction in aid of the Sohana Research Fund. They’re working on finding a cure for Recessive Dystrophic Epidermolysis Bullosa, a very painful, genetic skin disorder. It sold for £5639.

Top place to hang out? King’s Cross and its development over recent years is so exciting. Most weekends we walk along the canal, past Gasholder Park into Granary Square. The Classic Car Boot Sale is great fun. Other favourites are Spiritland, Ruby Violet and Vinoteca, which are all dog-friendly too. I enjoy taking our dog to Rochester Terrace Gardens. We’ve met a lovely, diverse group of people with pets that one would probably never cross paths with otherwise.


Follow Rachel on Instagram @hornythingsuk. More info here.

Main image: Rachel Whittingham

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