Elephants and Art
I invite ASI supporters and friends to join me at the Galerie St. Etienne in New York City on Tuesday, October 14 at the opening of "Elephants We Must Never Forget: New Paintings Drawings and Prints" by Sue Coe. If you're unable to join us this evening and you will be in Manhattan between October 14 and December 20, please visit the gallery to see an art show that inspires and informs. As Galerie St. Etienne Director Jane Kallir writes, Sue Coe has
earned a reputation as one of the foremost political artists of her generation by focusing on racial, class and gender inequities, came to the conclusion that humankind's relationship to the natural environment was the most compelling social issue of our time.
Jane Kallir's essay accompanying the show sympathetically addresses the issue of elephants in entertainment and explains why Sue Coe's art is in the tradition of such other great political artists as HonorA© Daumier, Max Klinger, KA¤the Kollwitz, Otto Dix and George Grosz.
I will be at the opening because Sue and I are collaborating on an autobiography of Topsy, the elephant Edison electrocuted in 1903.
As G. A. Bradshaw concludes in our Policy Paper, "Elephants in Circuses: Analysis of Practice, Policy and Future."
The fact that science has established that elephants posses attributes once considered uniquely human--emotions, culture, grief, intelligence, social complexity, tool-use, vocal learning, and even a sense of self--is really no surprise. But what is surprising is that institutions and professionals in charge of elephants have not altered their care significantly to match what we know. If we recognize that elephants are like us in so many ways, our knowledge compels us to reciprocate and measure up to elephant standards of ethics and humanity as their equals. The time is well overdue to reconcile what we know and what we do.
Published by on 09/29/2008 14:02:43