The exhibition made its debut appearance in Brighton, UK, kindly sponsored by Natural World Safaris, a Brighton-based travel company, specialising in extraordinary wildlife safaris.
This exhibition showcases 35,040 elephants in an 18 metre long infographic. Each square houses 96 elephants, the daily poaching rate in Africa, with a total of 365 squares. The monochrome colour palette reflects the indifference of these animals in their fate. To add a further nuance, four red lightboxes represent the hourly death toll, with red symbolising the blood spilt already. I have consciously not used gruesome images of mutilated elephants in order to shock my audience. I have sought to find a more sophisticated way to deliver the facts.
The exhibition received an incredible and positive response. Here is some of the feedback:
“This exhibition needs to be seen in China and Vietnam. I have lived in Vietnam for 7 years working with local communities and NGO’s, and in a nutshell, the Vietnamese education system isn’t strong enough to teach the young on these environmental and conservation issues, and the long term effects. There are lots of horrific images of elephants out there already but this exhibition is a very fresh approach, with a very high impact! Best of luck with getting this out there.”
“Elephants are beautiful and emotive creatures. I hope one day they will be allowed to thrive in peace. I highly commend your work with the vegetable ivory as an ethical alternative. Very emotive work.”
“My friend brought me a necklace from India, that I wear everyday. Your work has made me question the material it is made from. I had never considered that it might be made from ivory, and despite the gifts good intention, I’m not sure I can continue wearing it. Thank you for making me think!”
“Powerful…Subtle… Keep up your fight!”
“Honestly what a cause! Of course this could be applied to many other species in the world, but elephants are magical. Why do we have to destroy all our beauty, and our innocent relatives. Hopefully with your help and our support, we can make a change.”
“I hope the world takes note, supports this exhibition and we can make a change.”
“What I like about this exhibition is you haven’t resorted to brutal photography. Often this brutality really moves me but it doesn’t capture the grace and hope that can come with conservation efforts. The necklace is beautiful and the fact that it is done in a more iconic way is very effective.”
“I love that you are not only drawing attention to the elephant crisis but you are offering an alternative to elephant ivory too.”
“A lot of people in Asia aren’t aware that ivory comes from dead animals and the fact that there is a substitute. It’s more about awareness and that’s why this is such a fantastic exhibition.”
If you would like to host this exhibition, please get in contact to discuss your requirements.