Painting for Apes

Cleve Hicks, who led our 2012-2103 survey to Bili, has submitted these two watercolor paintings he made of chimpanzees from Northern DR Congo to the Endangered: Art for Apes contest. Check their on-line gallery.

Chimp by Cleve Hicks
African Ape in the Sunset

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Artist in Residence along the Lomami

Roger Peet at Obenge

Roger Peet (author of this post) sampling Ebambu fruit on his 2012 trip to the Lomami.

I’ve made two trips to the TL2 region, the first in 2012 and the second earlier this year. Each time I’ve been overwhelmed by the richness and diversity of the country, the generosity and depth of the people, and by the strange new world of culture and nature that I experienced. As a visual artist I’ve tried to make images that evoke some of these experiences.

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ITURI STORY. Anarchy in the Year 2000 — Part 10

motorcycle on forest road
The front motorcycle enters the forest after the village of Komanda

We were impressive: A whole cavalcade of motorcycles. Or perhaps not so impressive.   On the back roads of the United States, where we just came from, we would be ridiculous. The motorcycles were little Yamaha 100s, tough machines, but not the American bull-machines that roar through upstate summers. Each of our motorcycles was stacked high with baggage and supplies, and each motorcycle carried two people: driver and passenger, sandwiched together. For Rebekah and particularly Jojo this was a big event: Back to Epulu, and John joining us in a week and a half. But it was the uncertainty of the times that put an edge on everything. This was my third trip to Epulu this year, all on motorcycle; the vehicles had been the first things looted back in 1996 and it still wasn’t safe to replace them. Only two of these motorcycles were ours, the other two rented in Bunia.

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ITURI STORY. Wakati wa Vita – Part 9

baba and bekah
John and Rebekah in the forest. Rebekah almost 6 months old. The hunting net strung behind them.

After more than two years in Epulu, we still started each morning with a face wash at the river. For a few minutes the morning was just the river: the cool feel of it against our faces, its white riling around boulders mid-stream. In March the water was low and its rapids were brilliant with morning sun. Downstream, the mist rose between islands, streaked by shafts of light.

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