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Inflationary Art: Dead Animals Get the Basketball Treatment

It's the strangest spin on taxidermy you'll ever see: Chinese artist Yang Maoyuan takes the skins of dead animals and inflates them until they're several times the size they were when they were alive.

Then, he dyes the skin bizarre, unnatural and practically fluorescent colors -- like the poor animal you see here.

Hard to tell from this angle, I know, but that used to be a goat.

Yang is based in Beijing, the capital of China, but he travels to Hebei in the country's north to buy his dead animal skins.

According to Ripley's, Yang choose animals related to his Mongolian ancestry. The giant size reflects his dreams, while the round shape represents harmony in China.

And if all that isn't strange enough, he's partial to giving the animals in his art a few extra heads. Just in case.

His works don't get strange names in the tradition of Dali -- this one, for example, is Goat No. 3.

And yeah, you should see the other two.

Yang also has some yellow sheep, and a three-headed blue sheep that looks like it came from a nightmare rather than a dream.

You can see more of these strange animals -- as well as other unique art -- on Yang's Web site.

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