The Gorilla Organisation
For more than two decades, The Gorilla Organization has worked to save gorillas from extinction. They have continued to carry out projects through civil war, famine and natural disasters.
The Gorilla Organization was founded to support the anti-poaching patrols created by the pioneering primatologist Dr. Dian Fossey. In 2002 they continued to expand the scope of their field projects. With a headquarters in London the work expanded into Rwanda, Uganda and DR Congo. As well as supporting ranger patrols, their projects include organic farming, tree planting and gorilla-friendly beekeeping. Their projects help impoverished communities to earn a sustainable income without having to rely on the natural resources found in the gorillas’ forest home. Conservation education projects (radio programmes, children’s wildlife clubs and portable pedal-powered cinemas) allow the organisation to spread the message of gorilla conservation across Central and East Africa.
Fading from view
In our house we love learning about wildlife. I have two daughters who are determined to be Vets – one wants to work with domestic pets and the other with wildlife, especially big cats. Now I know that can change but while they watch programmes and read, I find that I am also learning.
I produced “Fading from view” to evoke emotions and thoughts. It represents the vulnerability of wildlife due to the destruction caused by deforestation and climate change. In parallel to exposing the negative impact that humankind has had, the painting aims to demonstrate how human beings also have the power to change the destruction.
Emotions and thoughts
The painting depicts a strong, majestic gorilla carefully placed in the palm of a semi-closed hand. It suggests that their future is in our hands; it is up to mankind to change, to protect, and to save the wildlife populations that are shrinking before us. Despite this animal being so naturally strong and resilient, the impact of mankind upon their homes and their lives is devastating. The hand is semi-closed; is it closing in a form of destruction, or partially closed in a manner of softly protecting what it holds? The juxtaposition of the smaller than life gorilla placed in the larger than life hand aims to highlight the vulnerability of these stunning creatures, and all wildlife, within the hands of those who often deny that there is a problem with the changes to the world.
The name of the painting “Fading from view” adds to the narrative of destruction and extinction of nature and wildlife. Each month and year, the populations of many species of wildlife shrink, and in some cases disappear forever.
The structure of the painting is to ensure that the viewers focus is on the gorilla. The background is plain grey colour so that the gorilla and hand stand out. The overall painting has a subtle blurred effect across it in order to demonstrate the unknown future of many species throughout the world. The artwork is from the viewers perspective looking down onto the hand holding the gorilla. The perspective can be observed as the viewer holding their own hand in front of them, or even something that has been handed down to them. As a father of four children, I always think about the impact that the previous and current generations are leaving for the generations to come.
Although I have been aware of the impact that we are having on the earth, over the past year this has come to the forefront. On the back of the Covid-19 pandemic, experts have highlighted how the continual destruction of nature could have contributed to it. I want to visually represent the power that humans possess; how can this be used to reverse what has already been done?
The original painting will be auctioned off with a percentage of proceeds going to charity.
To visit the auction, click here