Beasts of the Southern Wild – Benh Zeitlin

Magical realism is brought to the cinema in this recently released, haunting and captivating movie that I watched earlier today. Much of the impact of the film is purely sensory. Cinematography that creates beauty out of misery; a 6 year old actress who is as captivating as the most accomplished Hollywood diva; enchanting  music that …

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Real and Surreal – The Landscapes of Joan Miro

  I remember when, a few years ago, I visited the Joan Miro museum in Barcelona. There were two large, wall-sized paintings that each consisted just of one single curved line painted in black on white paper. I remember looking at these simple paintings and being overcome by a very strong emotional sense. For me …

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There are chimeras – no more either/or. The work of Ellen Rogers

The work of Ellen Rogers brings focus to the question of whether the human is part of, or separate from, “Nature”. The giraffe sculpture above has the body of a giraffe, human front legs a mechanical replacement for its hind legs and is made of steel. It is an artistic chimera – an image of …

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Wildlife Made Homeless – Born Free’s Ad Campaign

For many people it is difficult to understand, let alone empathize with, technical statements like “loss of habitat”. This advertizing campaign from the charity Born Free aims to bring this issue into the more human terms of ‘homelessness’. Using images of animals placed in the context of human homelessness, the campaign tries to make clear …

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Animal Mysticism – Gregory Colbert’s Ashes and Snow

The images in Gregory Colbert’s Ashes and Snow remind us that animals have always had a mystical place in the world of humans. Started in 1992, Ashes and Snow is a long term project in which photographer and film-maker Gregory Colbert works towards “rediscovering the common ground that once existed when people lived in harmony …

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Naked With Pigs – Miru Kim

“These industrial environments are so desensitizing in that you, even if you are an animal lover, become complacently accepting of the fact that the live beings are only raw materials for mass commodity production. This needs some serious questioning.” These are some of the thoughts of New York Based artist Miru Kim in relation to …

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Robin Schwartz – Amelia and her Animals

Robin Schwartz is a friend. But that’s not why her work is on this blog. It is here because, for many months, I have been looking for work that describes a positive relationship between us and the non-human rather than the ubiquitous work that castigates ad nauseam the damage we are doing to our environment. …

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What does bullfighting have to do with the environment?

Recently I came across this story which was stimulated by an outdoor performance art event as activism. One hundred and twenty five people stripped to their underpants, painted their bodies and created a giant, bleeding bull in front of the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain. They were protesting against the imminent start of the bullfighting …

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Sex, Celebrity and Conservation – The Art of Peter Beard

Peter Beard is probably one of the earliest modern artists to turn his hand to the issues of Man’s ever-increasing impact on the planet and the resulting death and destruction.  Using a photographic medium, Beard starting by documenting, in the 1960s, the destruction of wildlife habitat and the death of over 35,000 elephants and 5,000 …

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Turning Back The Clock – Harri Kallio and the Dodo

I have often wondered what the now extinct dodo bird looked like when it was still around and roaming in the wild. Harri Kallio has tried to give us an insight into this lost-forever part of our world with his series “The Dodo and Mauritius Island” Kallio undertook extensive research into the dodo, what it …

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