Two weeks ago I wrote the following inscription on the back of one of my Siberian Tiger plates “Bang!”, for Save Wild Tigers event of the year, ‘Inspire’, Kuala Lumpur, October 2014,
“Fewer than 3,200 wild tigers remain, lets inspire a generation and reverse the decline”.
Today sadly, the official number of tigers in the wild just released, stands at only 3000.
The clock is ticking and ticking fast, but there’s still time to save the tiger. To join the fight back and help keep the tiger “burning bright” visit www.savewildtigers.org
More information about ‘Inspire’, Kuala Lumpur coming soon.
Since writing and drawing this inscription on the back of ‘Shh it’s a Tiger!’ china plate for ‘Thrive’, Save Wild Tigers exhibition on 14th May 2014, there are now estimated to be fewer than 3200. Less than 4 months ago wild tiger numbers were estimated at 3500.
For further information please visit www.savewildtigers.org
THE LEGEND OF THE LAST SOUTH CHINA TIGER
(Written especially for SAVE WILD TIGERS The Legend of the Last South China Tiger accompanies a drawing diptych, of which the second drawing has been donated to Save Wild Tigers and will be exhibited alongside the work of 20 inspirational artists, curated by Lauren Baker, in ‘THRIVE’ Exhibition, Sanderson Hotel, London, 14th – 19th May and auctioned at the Mango Tree Tiger Dinner, 20th May)
‘Yin and Yang’, Drawing One
And so the legend of the last wild South China tiger begins …
Under the constellation of the White Tiger of the West, protected by the sacred Tigress Warriors of Yin, the last wild South China tiger cub, Amoy cowers behind the most powerful of the Tigress Warriors. Amoy can hear the reverberation of horses’ hooves coming closer. In the East under the constellation of the Azure Dragon, the warriors of Yang ride out in search of Amoy. Clouds of dust raised by the galloping cavalry form Goddesses of Love in the sky, anticipating his capture, for the Azure Dragon prizes the bones of the White Tiger’s children. Misguidedly he thinks tiger parts cure disease and heighten passion and has slain Amoy’s relatives one by one. But the Tigress Warriors are brave and fearless and their swords are sharp. Amoy’s eyes widen with fear as the cavalry draws closer…
Part Two of the legend and the second drawing will be revealed soon…
There are less than 3500 tigers left in the wild and thought to be no South China Tigers surviving in the wild. But the inspirational SAVE WILD TIGERS UK charity is working tirelessly to save the last remaining wild tigers. Join them today and help save wild tigers!
20 limited edition archival pigment prints of the second donated drawing, made by Jack Lowe Studio will be available from 14th May with ALL profits donated to Save Wild Tigers. ‘South China Tiger’ diptych will be released later this year as part of my fine China limited edition plate series “In Homage to the Last Great Carnivores of Eurasia” to celebrate the majesty of tigers and highlight their decline through wildlife crime.
On 20th May 2014 Save Wild Tigers, an incredible organisation dedicated to saving the worlds last remaining wild tigers will be holding an auction dinner of tiger inspired artwork at the Mango Tree, London. ‘THRIVE’, a unique and inspirational exhibition of this artwork, made by 20 artists will be shown from 14th – 19th May at the Sanderson Hotel, London.
I feel exceptionally privileged that a new piece of work made specially for Save Wild Tigers will be exhibited in THRIVE alongside a group of amazing artists and their tiger artwork, curated by exceptional multimedia artist Lauren Baker.
When I was a wee girl tigers were already endangered. In the mid 1970s after reading that the Caspian Tiger was thought to be extinct I wrote to a company whose advertising campaigns featured a tiger, to ask if they were helping save tigers. It seemed logical to a child that if a company used an endangered animal in its advertising they must be donating some of their profit to conserve tigers. I didn’t receive a reply. By the time the company was donating towards tiger conservation in the 1990s, I was driving tube trains on the Northern Line and still hoping I could do something to help wild tigers. After all how can we look ourselves in the mirror as a species if we don’t try to save one of the most beautiful and iconic animals on the planet.
Save Wild Tigers is a incredibly innovative organisation who work tirelessly to raise funds which “go directly to targeted and critical tiger conservation projects that make a real difference” including the Born Free Foundation and the Environmental Investigation Agency. Save Wild Tigers actively encourage people to get involved in helping to save tigers – from artists and other creatives to tiny tigers of our younger generations.
Since pledging the second Biro drawing in a new diptych of South China Tigers for the next two plates in my ceramics series, I have written my own tiger legend especially for Save Wild Tigers. The drawing will be revealed after the exhibition opening. A luxury limited edition series of 20 archival pigment prints of the drawing made by master printmaker Jack Lowe Studio will be available to purchase with ALL profits donated to Save Wild Tigers. Plates No.1 of ‘Shh, it’s a Tiger!’ and ‘Bang!’ will also be auctioned on the 20th of May.
Thank you Save Wild Tigers for all your hard work saving tigers and for including my work in your inspirational exhibition!
‘Bang!’ is the second drawing in my diptych, ‘Siberian Tiger’, which is part of my luxury fine English china plate and print series. Inspired by the elusive Amur tiger, stealing through the forests of Ussuriland in Scottish film maker Gordon Buchanan’s beautifully shot film ‘Amba, the Russian Tiger’, 2008, a tiger skull placed beside a walking Siberian tiger is layered with a projected image of a group of revolutionary Red Army soldiers posing with a tiger they have shot. The target of the sniper rifle in the foliage of ‘Shh, it’s a Tiger!‘ is revealed as the walking tiger in ‘Bang!’ through the symbolic bullet hole in the skull.
The simplicity of this drawing which juxtaposes the complexity of ‘Shh, it’s a Tiger!’ carries an epic message, unless the illegal hunting of tigers by poachers is halted, Siberian Tigers will no longer roam the forests of Ussuriland. Around 400 Amur Tigers remain in the wild. Wildlife crime remains one of the greatest threats to their survival. For further information about the Amur Tiger please click on this link to WWF’s website
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As part of my china and print series ‘In Homage to the Last Great Carnivores of Eurasia’ the first Biro drawing in the Siberian Tiger diptych was inspired by two things – a drawing by an old master and an iconic image of India.
The synonymous image of a Royal Bengal tiger bathing in a pool in Ranthambore National Park, India with its majestic ruined palaces, was the basis for my Russian fantasy of the Siberian tiger. Albrecht Dürer’s beautiful and beguiling drawing ‘Landscape with a Woodland Pool’ 1496, a photograph of a forest pool in Ussuriland and Ivan Shishkin’s painting, ‘The Forest of Countess Mordvinova’, 1891, form the inspiration for the background drawing layers, creating the fantastical setting for a bathing Siberian Tiger.
At the edge of the lake sits a Dacha birdcage from my own collection. Reclining inside is a Siberian tiger, further suggesting the image of Royal Bengal tigers shading inside Indian palaces but also indicating the thousands of tigers kept in captivity in comparison with so few remaining wild tigers. A giant Siberian tiger sweeps through the forest background, emulating the Udege and Nanai name for the tiger “Amba”, ‘Guardian of the Forest’. Breaking through the forest is a cavalry of Red Army soldiers symbolising the devastation wreaked on the Siberian Tiger population, which was almost extinguished by both Red and White Armies around Vladivostok during the Russian Revolution.
On the right walks a tiger beside an Udege woman from a still photograph I took of ‘Amba the Russian Tiger‘, 2008, Gordon Buchanan, proclaiming the fragility of not only the tiger population but the indigenous people of Ussuriland. The tiger in the pool looks beyond a sniper rifle hidden in the foliage, outside the picture towards ‘Bang!’ the second drawing in the Siberian Tiger diptych. A skull with a bullet hole depicted in ‘Bang!’ indicates what the tiger in the pool is watching, a tiger hunt!
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I am delighted to announce the arrival of my luxury fine English china plate series “In Homage to the Last Great Carnivores of Eurasia” at the home of cutting edge ceramics, THE NEW ENGLISH
‘In Homage to the Last Great Carnivores of Eurasia’ is a set of finest English china platters designed from my original black Biro drawings. It celebrates the beauty and majesty of threatened and endangered species across the Eurasian continent whilst highlighting their depletion through wildlife crime.
The set includes eight designs each with its own complex layers of symbolism relating to the species the design depicts. Diptych subjects include homage to Grey Wolves, Amur Leopards, Siberian Tigers and Brown Bears.
Made in Stoke-on-Trent in England, the historic home of fine British ceramics, by prestigious ceramic designers The New English, each platter measures 280mm diameter and is a limited signed and numbered edition of 200. Made to order, plates are available as sets or as individual pieces. New limited edition platters of Eurasian species will be released later this year.
Orders: THE NEW ENGLISH