The digital age has seen many unusual ideas shared. One of the rarest and most infectious is a series of art done by a man obsessed with flies.

The Argus reported on October 14 how Swedish photographer, artist and mental health worker Magnus Muhr was bringing his work to the Lord Nelson pub in Trafalgar Street. Before he arrives in person to meet fans and sign copies of his book, Muhr spoke to The Guide about the dancing and sunbathing dead insects which have got the global blogosphere all abuzz.

How long do you spend on each picture?

“I spend from five to 30 minutes on a picture. It depends on the drawing and the number of flies.”

How many will be in the exhibition?

“About 20 pictures. Those at the exhibition in Brighton belong to a new, numbered (up to 100 copies) series in A3 size.”

Are you surprised by the general public’s interest?

“Yes! I always thought that the fly pictures where quite funny but I could never have dreamt of this kind of interest.”

How important was the internet?

“It is an internet phenomenon, no doubt. Since the fly pictures were buzzed they were spread all over the net in no time, from China to Australia. I knew the internet was fast, but not that fast!”

Have you ever considered using other insects?

“I have made a few pictures for advertising with ants, mosquitoes and wasps, but I think I’m gonna continue with the flies in the future too. But who knows?”

What prompted you to put that first fly on canvas and start drawing around it?

“It all started one night at a boring party back in May 2004. I went for a walk, saw a dead fly on the ground and immediately came up with the silly idea to put the fly on a white paper and draw some corny legs and arms on it and take a photo… the rest is history. Thank God for boring parties.”

What makes flies such a good subject?

“It might be because they represent the opposite creatures of the intellectual human. We experience them as rather cheeky and annoying animals. Butterflies, for instance, wouldn’t have fit for these kind of pictures. The challenge is to take these “creepy” flies and to try to make them cute and funny.”

How do you preserve the flies?

“They are dry when I collect them, and I preserve them in that condition in a small can.”

How much are the prints?

“The price for an A3-size print is £60.”

What price for an original... are they even for sale?

“There are no originals because I don’t glue them on the paper. I use the same flies over and over again. But maybe that would be a good idea to make some artwork with the actual flies and then frame them.”

Which print has been your best seller? What makes it so popular?

“The two sunbathing flies. This picture is so popular because you can relate to it yourself, you have been to the beach and laid in the sun just like those flies.”

Which artists inspire you?

“Gary Larson – I love his sense of humour and his silly drawings.”

Did you ever study drawing?

“No, but I have been drawing all my life.”

You are a keen photographer – does that help with composition?

“I think it helps a lot because you are always thinking in ‘pictures’ when you are creating these images.”

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