Empowering the Endangered
“To save rare species from extinction, we need to build emotional bonds with the natural world.” - Jonathan Baillie, National Geographic
Empowering the Endangered attempts to reconnect us to our natural world by illustrating the importance of all living things, great and small, found in their masses or scarcely found at all.
Amiria-Wikitoria, in Maori translates as Hardworker-Victorious. From New Zealand, the Kakapo is the worlds only flightless parrot, and with less than 150 adult birds in the wild this is a critically endangered species.
Known locally in Malagasy as ‘Maky’ the Ring-Tailed Lemur is one of the 8000 species listed as vulnerable or endangered in Madagascar. Since 2015, 15 species of lemur are now extinct. This is due to rapid deforestation for farming endeavours or the illegal logging of trees such as Ebony and Rosewood.
Gui, meaning honourable/valuable and Zuo, meaning ‘the left guardian of a Palace’ is a Giant Panda native to South Central China. In 2016 the IUCN reclassified this species from endangered to vulnerable with an estimated 1500 adults living in the wild. Deforestation has forced giant pandas out of the lowland areas. It is a conservation reliant species.
It’s thought that up to 90% of Madagascar’s original forest is now lost. As a result of deforestation, soil quality is poor, making the replanting of native trees difficult. The increase in human population and the lack of electricity means that people burn wood for fuel, adding to deforestation.
Amiria-Wikitoria’s feathers are not what they seem, using native New Zealand foliage to form her plumage this striking illustration aims to portray the importance of all living things. Connecting the dots and forming the bonds we appear to have lost in our thirst for ‘progress’.