By Kate Good
Despite their size and intelligence, elephants are some of the most endangered species on the planet. The more we learn about the sentience of these gentle giants, the more deplorable the damage that humans have wrought on their species seems. Every fifteen minutes an elephant is killed for their ivory tusks. Every year up to 50,000 African elephants succumb to poachers. Sadly, poaching is not the only threat facing the elephant species, they are also endangered by habitat loss, the tourism trade, and the entertainment industry. Almost single handedly, humans have decimated the elephant species, and if we don’t take drastic action to protect them, it is likely elephants will go extinct from the wild within our lifetimes.
As instrumental as humans have been in the destruction of the elephant, we now must be in the conservation and revitalization of this species. More and more people are waking up to the fact that the choices they make can have an impact on elephants. By choosing not to attend circuses, boycotting the zoo, and not purchasing ivory, we are slowly making a difference. Capitalizing on the idea that everyone can use their power as individuals to make a positive change for elephants, Artists Against Ivory is raising awareness for the ivory trade through wearable art.
Outfitting a Movement
The message behind Artists Against Ivory is relatively simple, “true art does not sacrifice life.” Proponents of ivory see the statues and trinkets carved from an elephants tusk as a priceless works of art, not what they really are – the lives of irreplaceable animals. Some even believe that an elephant’s tusk simply falls out like a tooth, causing no harm to the elephant at all – quite the euphemism for how ivory is really acquired. But Artists Against Ivory wants to set a new tone for elephants using art, one that spreads a message of the value of the living elephant, rather than simply highlighting its tusks. More....