Art in support of endangered species: A group exhibition for IUCN red listed species on the Cape coast, Garden Route and Karoo, in South Africa.
10-30 November 2018
Knysna Art Gallery, Old Gaol, Cnr Main & Queen Streets, Knysna, South Africa
Artists: Amy Anstey | Annie le Roux | Chris Lochner | Gwendolyn Meyer | Hein Botha | Helena Joubert | Ingrid Coerlin | Ingrid Nuss | Jane Pitchford | Janet Botes | Jurgens Walt | Kali van der Merwe | Madelein Marincowitz | Nico Voges | Quentin Horn
Presentations by: Sue Swain (BioWise) | Dr. Louw Claassens (Knysna Basin Project) | Mark Dixon (Garden Route Trail) | Philippa Mallac (Sacred Earth Seeds) | Dr. Mark Brown (Natures Valley Trust) | Dr Dave Edge (Brenton Blue Trust) | Dr Chloé Guerbois (Sustainability Research Unit George Campus, NMU) | Dr Bool Smuts (Landmark Foundation)
With the valuable support of friends, family, and fellow artists, I curated the group exhibition “VERGE” with a series of talks, workshops, and walks at the Knysna Art Gallery in November 2019. Inspired and in support of REMEMBRANCE DAY FOR LOST SPECIES, which happens on NOVEMBER 30TH every year, the artworks in the exhibition highlighted local endangered and vulnerable species like the Knysna seahorse (Hippocampus capensis), African black oystercatcher (Haematopus moquini), African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) and the striking Pink Satyr (Satyrium hallackii subsp. hallackii). Also, some international species, such as the hawksbill sea turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata), were also represented.
Inspired and in support of REMEMBRANCE DAY FOR LOST SPECIES, which happens on NOVEMBER 30TH every year.
“People explore the stories of extinct and critically endangered species, cultures, lifeways, and ecological communities. Whilst emphasising that these losses are rooted in violent and discriminatory governing practices, the day provides an opportunity for participants to make or renew commitments to all who remain, and to develop creative and practical solutions.
Remembrance Day for Lost Species honours diverse experiences and practices associated with enduring and witnessing the loss of cultural and biological diversity. Participate in any way you choose – the annual theme can provide inspiration. Previous events have taken many forms including art projects, processions, tree planting, rituals and more.”
In South Africa there’s been some awareness about the dire situation with rhino and elephant poaching. Trophy hunting and canned lion hunting is also big problems for giraffes, lions and other large wildlife in our country. But what about the many other species listed as critically endangered on the IUCN red list? Hunting, habitat destruction, farmer-predator conflict, over-harvesting, overfishing, bycatch and conventional agriculture poses great risks for our biodiversity, and when one species disappear it very often affects the entire ecosystem. Art has the power to stir the emotions of gallery visitors, and have the ability to pose questions that could change perception around important issues and how we deal with them.
A big thank you to the artists, Dr. Louw Claassens, Dr. Mark Brown, Dr. Dave Edge, Dr Chloé Guerbois, Sue Swain, members from the Outramps CREW, Mark Dixon, Philippa Mallac, Vernon Pendlebury, and Nanna (Helena) Joubert. A special thanks to Ricardo van den Lingen, Bernice Haman, Finn Rautenbach and Lindie Calitz, and everyone else who helped, supported and participated to make this such a great project!