The animal sculptures were produced by visiting charity shops to buy and recycle second rate disposable figures. These were then adapted with papier-mâché to extend the parameters for my painting.
I would spray them black, depriving the creatures of their individual and unique markings, their status symbols, and their rank in a herd/pack/pride etc., and reflecting the callous brutality of poachers and their blight on wildlife.
I would then paint idiosyncratic designs over the black in robust, colourful and playful themes. I didn’t just return these figures to their original state, I wanted to make a statement with bold, brazen war-paint against man’s savages and obscure fetishes for rhino horn, elephants tuck, and tiger coats etc.
Ironically, the vile intrusion of ancient wilderness and its self-regulating eco-system by man can be countered by wildlife protection by humans. The ambivalence of such arguments weren’t meant to be lost in these colourful designs, but they represent how man has to proceed positively on an issue of a global nature in the richer (Russia) and poorer (Zambia) parts of the world.