Opus Gallery Te Kōputu a te whanga a Toi, Whakatāne Library and Exhibition Centre, Whakatāne
Animals have been an integral component of human storytelling from early myths to modern fables, such as The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling published in 1894, George Orwell’s Animal Farm published 1945, and French author Pierre Boulle’s La Planète des Singes (better known as the Planet of the Apes) published in 1963.
Animals are used in an anthropomorphic manner: as metaphors, as representative symbols for human behaviour and interaction, as vessels for human emotions expressing innate animal instinct, environmental change, and political satire.
For this exhibition, the animals tell their stories in the jungle — a place that carries connotations of the untamed and uncontrollable, evoking emotions of confusion, powerlessness, disorientation and isolation, where the only law is perceived to be ‘survival of the fittest’.
This is said to reflect the modern city life: a concrete jungle with high density building and asphalt landscapes, disconnected from the natural world, where the relationships of accountability become less obvious and morality a question of deferred ethics.
This is expressed in the 80s anthem Welcome to the Jungle, by American rock band Guns N’ Roses, featured on their 1987 debut album, Appetite for Destruction. The song alludes that to live in this world we need to learn to live like animals and consider the comparative consequences of living in a type of jungle.
Date(s) - 01/04/2017 - 28/05/2017