Blue Scales


I created this work in remembrance of a pangolin that I assisted in rearing at the Johannesburg Zoo some 10 years ago. One of my school friends was working at the zoo and asked if I needed images of a pangolin as reference for my work. He told me that a pangolin had been illegally captured and was in a bad state after having contracted pneumonia. I took the opportunity and spent a few months assisting with her rehabilitation, nursing her slowly back to health. As you can imagine, I took countless pictures of her, especially while walking her in the Melville koppies. Interesting fact is that she loved eating black ants – especially the white grubs – opening up any nests and being very selective with regards to what she wanted. She also smelled of formicide – the pungent smell of the ants she ate. She was eventually released at Sabi Sands with a tracking device to monitor her progress. Since then I often think myself very fortunate to have had such a wonderful experience with her and while it wasn’t the only time I’ve seen a pangolin, it was certainly the longest encounter I’ve had with one. Pangolins feature a lot in my work, where they represent the connection between the subconscious and the dream world. The background of this work was created with 9 different layers, creating an image where the colours reflect and pop off the surface.

Size: 140 x 160 cm // 55 x 63 in


Additional information


Original (140 x 160 cm), A1 (60 x 85 cm), A3 (30 x 42 cm), A4 (21 x 30 cm)