Rainbow Scarab (Phanaeus vindex)
…a species of dung beetle that is native to North America, ranging from the east to the Rocky Mountains. Noted for its impressive ‘rainbow’ coloration this species is easily recognizable. Like other dung beetles this species will locate and move dung. Males and females will work in pairs to dig burrows beneath animal dung. After the burrows are complete they will move the dung into the tunnel, where the female will lay her eggs in it. The grubs will then feed on the dung until they pupate.
Leonce Raphael Agbodjelou Untitled (Demoiselles de Porto-Novo series), 2012The son of Benin’s best-known photographer Joseph Moise Agbodjelou, Leonce Raphael Agbodjelou photographs the people of his hometown—the thriving port city of Porto-Novo, caught between tradition and modern influences. Drawing subjects from street life, friends, family, and studio customers, Agbodjelou produces carefully composed portraits of individuals in interior spaces, standing in brightly colored, traditional Yoruba costumes against mud brick walls. In his “Demoiselles de Porto-Novo” series—which addresses art history through its triptych formats and titular references to Picasso—he focuses on the young female citizens of Porto-Novo, often capturing them in ceremonial or Vodun masks. Images such as Untitled Triptych (from the series Demoiselles de Porto-Novo) (2012), feature Portuguese-style colonial buildings, which point to the city’s historical role as a gateway for the colonial slave trade with Brazil. Agbodjelou recently opened Benin’s first photography school.